What can parties do in the beginning of the divorce process to assure the likelihood of a non-adversarial divorce? To the extent possible, both parties need to be on the same page that a divorce is best for them and their children if they have them. In order to do this, it is advisable to go to counseling to have the therapist get both parties on the same page. This is the time when each party can release their emotions and the therapist can move them in a direction of not reconciling but helping each party get past the hurt they carry to move forward. This can also be done in the collaborative divorce with the help of mental health coaches. The reason for this process is for the parties to be able to see the divorce more as a business transaction which should keep emotions out of the discussions. Once emotions come into the negotiation process, it makes settlement more difficult and the divorce process will remain adversarial, take longer and be more expensive.
It is also important to interview several attorneys before retaining them to make sure you have the best fit for your needs. Some attorneys are very aggressive in nature which will fuel the litigation thus resulting in more money in their pocket and less in yours for often fewer desirable results. Lastly, as my website portrays, you have options in a divorce. Therefore, not only should you minimize emotions, interview potential attorneys as they work for you, but you should also investigate whether collaborative divorce, mediation or litigation will be the best option for you and your family. I am happy to consult with you in an effort to decide the option that will work best and guide you through the process. You will not be alone and will see results that work.