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Collaborative vs Litigation : Options for Divorcing Couples

Divorce is an ugly word and an even uglier time but a very real part of many peoples lives today. My name is David Bouschor, I’m a board-certified family law lawyer.

The key question for many people, in time of divorce, is how does the divorce work? And how do I get it done? Unless you’ve been down the road before this may be the first time that you’ve ever asked yourself this question. The short answer is that there is a process in getting you down the divorce road. And you have choices all along the way. The first choice or decision is the process that you want to follow in getting your divorce. You can use the litigation method or you can use the collaborative method. Both are recognized in the Texas Family Code. In litigation, the parties file pleadings with the court in an attempt to settle their case by working through their attorneys, using the rules of civil procedure, rules of evidence and other codes, to negotiate all the issues in the case. If no settlement can be reached, the parties go before a judge, and the judge will render an order and finalize the case.

In collaborative law, parties files pleadings with the court to start their case. Then they and their attorneys enter into a participation agreement whereby they agree not to go to court. They enter into negotiations and they work on settling their case using third party neutrals such as CPA’s, communications coaches, and a child specialist. Ultimately they come up with a settlement that they have crafted and that they believe is in the best interest of their family.

Mediation is a tool that can be used in both litigation and collaboration. It is where a third party mediator meets with the clients and their attorneys, sometimes together, sometimes separately, and work on issues that stand in the way of settling the case.

As your attorney, my goal is to assure that your interests and goals are strongly represented throughout the process, both ethically and equitably and that you are given the information you need to make a fully informed decision about your case. My staff and I will help you navigate the curves and the potholes along the road so that you and your children will end up with the best possible solution, both financially and emotionally.

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