Even though the majority of cases don’t go to trial, sometimes the assistance of the court is helpful. The court can compel parties to disclose information when they are not forthcoming or move parties along when they deliberately slow down the process. The goal is to settle the issues with the other party and their attorney without going to court, but often the court's assistance is necessary.
A mediator is one neutral person (often an attorney) who assists the parties in reaching an agreement. The parties meet for two-hour meetings as often as necessary to reach a resolution. Each party brings the agreement to their own attorney who reviews the agreement and then the final papers are drafted to effectuate the divorce.
The parties and team sign an agreement that the case is not going to go to court. Each party, with their own attorney, attends a series of two-hour meetings until resolution of the issues. The team, depending on their client's needs, also enlist the services of a neutral financial expert, child expert and/or a divorce coach who is a mental health professional who can facilitate the clients in reaching an agreement based on their specific needs and interests. The collaborative process not only helps the clients reach an agreement based on their interests, but also assists them in making decision for their children after the divorce.