Pennsylvania couples going through a divorce may be pleasantly surprised at the choices they have. No longer do divorces occur only in the courtroom where spouses battle for every decision and sometimes walk away enemies. One of the more popular options is a collaborative divorce. While similar in some ways to mediation, collaboration has its unique features that may be more appropriate for certain situations.

Spouses who are able to find middle ground in their breakup may not need a long courtroom scene to dissolve their marriages. Using alternative dispute resolution like mediation or collaboration, they can reach decisions about their future together. Unlike mediation, collaboration does not include a third-party facilitator. Instead, the parties may call on professionals in other areas, such as finances or child advocacy, but mostly, they spouses meet together with their individual attorneys to work through their differences collaboratively.

Having an attorney is an important part of any negotiations one undertakes outside of court. While the spouses may have an amicable parting, attorneys protect each party from compromising their rights and their future well-being. In collaborative divorce, however, the attorneys for each spouse are motivated to keep the process peaceful and successful because if collaboration doesn’t result in a settlement, the spouses must find new attorneys when they move to litigation.

Collaborative divorce requires both spouses to be willing to disclose all financial information and to work in good faith toward resolving any conflicts. It can be a method of divorce that allows both parties to move forward without the heaviness and regret litigation often leaves behind. Before choosing any method of divorce, it is wise to seek sound advice from a Pennsylvania legal professional.