Streamlined Collaborative Family Law Program
What is Collaborative Practice?
Collaborative Practice is a settlement process that focuses on helping you and your family find a way to respectful resolution. You have the benefit of legal representation and a safe environment to resolve your divorce or separation without turning over decision-making to a judge. Collaborative Divorce also has the benefit of including financial specialists, familycoaches and other professionals all working together on a team to help you create a customized agreement. Finally, going to court is off the table as an option to resolving differences.
What makes this program special?
Although the Streamlined Family Divorce Program utilizes the traditional multidisciplinary team model of collaborative practice, the fee structure is different.
Rather than paying each professional at an hourly rate, there is a flat fee determined at the start of your case. Fees are based on a sliding scale taking into account your joint income and your net worth. 60% of the fee is paid at the onset of the process and 40% is paid upon completion and prior to the preparation of final documents. Some families may qualify for pro bono services.
The streamlined design of the program also allows for efficient and timely resolution of your divorce or separation. Some cases that included custody, financial, and co-parenting issues have taken a mere three months from start to finish.
What do I get as part of the flat fee service?
For a flat fee, you will receive a set number of sessions with your attorney as well as the team of professionals. You will meet individually with your attorney and have two joint sessions with the financial professional to discuss property division, cash flow, budgets, and other financial matters. In cases where children are involved, you will have two joint sessions with the Family Professional to develop a parenting plan. The results of those meetings are reviewed with your attorney and then brought to the full group meetings for negotiation and settlement. Generally, there are only two or three full team meetings of 90 minutes each.
The professional team communicates on a scheduled and predictable format throughout the process to facilitate the integration of information and to keep the process moving forward.
How will I know what to expect throughout the process?
You will receive a “Roadmap” that spells out what will happen at each stage of the process and at each meeting. The roadmap includes specific homework assignments after each meeting and the target completion date for each stage. You will be provided with a binder of materials at the onset of the process, which includes (among other documents) the Roadmap; any agreements you sign; a glossary of legal terms, statutes, and Automatic Orders; a parenting plan worksheet (if applicable), reading materials to help you prepare for your joint meetings with the Family Professional and the Financial Professional; and articles about how to engage successfully in collaborative negotiations.
What if I'm interested in the program, but I don't have a collaborative attorney?
We have a roster of more than 50 practitioners who participate in the program, from which a team will be put together to work with you and your spouse. If you or your spouse already have an attorney, then we will supplement the team.
How can I find our more about the Streamlined Collaborative Divorce Program or sign up to participate?
Contact us at (860) 232-9993 x315 or firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss the program in more detail.