22Feb, 18

A divorce can be one of the most difficult and painful experiences a person can experience in his or her life.  The end of a marriage may bring uncertainty, financial insecurity and feelings of loss of a once valued relationship.  However, divorce is not only an end but a new beginning.  In most cases, divorce is terminating a dysfunctional and unhealthy relationship and provides the parties the opportunity to find happiness once again.

When a divorcing couple chooses to end their relationship through the court system, often times the parties predominantly focus on the end of the marriage and give very little attention to the new beginning.  This is because the court process is an adversarial system which pits the spouses against each other.  Typically, the parties focus is to hurt his or her spouse and to punish him or her for any of the ill feelings that had arisen during the relationship which often results in long and expensive court proceedings.  To further exacerbate the situation, the ill feelings that develop during the marriage are only heightened during the divorce process which often times leads to further ill feelings and prolonged litigation.  In cases where the parties have children, these negative feelings may carry over after the divorce and impact their ability to co-parent, which results in further litigation after the divorce on issues of support, parenting rights/custody and responsibilities, college education, et cetera.  Often parents spend the rest of their kids’ childhood fighting over issues which many times have little to do about the kids but instead have more to do with their lingering ill feelings towards their former spouse.

Collaborative law is a solution to the traditional litigation process as it not only addresses the end of the marriage but focuses on both parties’ new beginning.  Under the Collaborative law process, the parties and their attorneys each commit to work together to resolve the matter in a way that is fair and just to both parties and agree that they will avoid using the court system to resolve their differences.  The Collaborative process helps the parties learn the techniques and provides them the tools they will need not only to resolve their differences in the end of their marriage but also to resolve any issues that may arise post-divorce.  As such, the collaborative process often builds agreements which stand the test of time and may result in fewer post-divorce court proceedings.

Unlike the traditional process through the court system, the Collaborative process is non-adversarial as the parties commit to work with each other in a respectful and fair manner.  The parties are also encouraged during the process to resolve any hard feelings and resentment that may have built up during the marriage and to remove them as obstacles to both the settlement process as well as any future dealings post-divorce.  As such, the Collaborative process often results in a less acrimonious and confrontational end to the relationship, and focuses on creating a new beginning for the entire family.  This is especially important where the parties have minor children.

Please contact an attorney at Hamblett and Kerrigan to discuss the Collaborative process in greater detail.


Kevin P. Rauseo is a director at Hamblett & Kerrigan P.A. He concentrates his practice in the areas of family and divorce law, Collaborative law, child custody and visitation, child support and alimony. He is a member of the International Academy of Collaborative Professional and has previously served on the Public Education Advisory Panel of the Academy and Professional Development Committee. He is also a Certified Financial Litigator and a founding member of the American Academy for Certified Financial Litigators. AV Preeminent Rated by Martindale-Hubbell. Recipient of the 2014 Nationally Ranked Top 10 Attorney Award from the National Academy of Family Law Attorneys (NAFLA).   You can reach Attorney Rauseo at  Click link for client reviews on Attorney Rauseo: