Lawyer Monthly - January 2024

steering spouses towards constructive resolutions rooted in mutual understanding and shared objectives. What are the stages and process of collaborative divorce in Connecticut? Both spouses retain and meet with their respective collaboratively trained attorneys to discuss the process and establish goals. The mental health neutral and a financial neutral will also have introductory meetings with the spouses. The collaborative process commences with a team meeting and the signing of the participation agreement. This is an essential part of the collaborative divorce process. During the initial team meeting, there is a customary practice of reading the agreement aloud. The protocols between parents concerning their children and establish a comprehensive schedule, encompassing everything from household transitions and holidays to strategies for navigating potential disagreements. The financial neutral maintains impartiality, advocating for neither spouse but rather focusing on equitable outcomes. The financial neutral will encourage divorcing couples to look at long term goals and consider what is in the best interests of the entire family. He or she may offer expertise on valuing family businesses, navigate intricate tax implications, and help determine how the spouses can best financially support two households. The team works together, guided by forward-looking perspectives that prioritize the collective well-being of the family. Unlike adversarial litigation, collaborative divorce champions a transparent, cooperative approach, agreements that fulfill objectives while safeguarding the well-being of the entire family. What sets collaborative divorce apart from the traditional litigious approach is the proactive stance of collaborative lawyers. They anticipate potential conflicts, actively seek creative solutions to problems, and navigate the divorce process with a commitment to cooperative resolution, mutual respect, and dignified conduct. The neutral mental health professional’s role is equally important in the collaborative divorce process. By guiding spouses through effective communication techniques, the spouses are empowered to co-parent with greater harmony, fostering a nurturing environment for their children. Additionally, the mental health professional aids in formulating tailored parenting plans that address each child’s developmental needs. These plans outline communication WWW.LAWYER-MONTHLY.COM 21 What sets collaborative divorce apart from the traditional litigious approach is the proactive stance of collaborative lawyers. Rosemarie Ferrante Divorce Mediation Center of Fairfield County, CT

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