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Even a non-amicable Minnesota divorce doesn't have to be messy

We haven't written for some time about collaborative law, or as it is also known, alternative dispute resolution. Let's use today's post to remedy that situation.

In our last post on this topic we focused on the general subject of collaborative law and the benefits it may provide to divorcing Minnesota couples who want to reduce the time, expense and emotional upheaval that can accompany the drama of going to court.

The idea is that by committing to collaborate in resolving all the issues related to divorce, it can make the process go much more smoothly and generate less anxiety. At the very least, the hope is that it will reduce any long-term distress, whether it is emotional or financial.

For the sake of clarity, let's stipulate up front that when we talk about collaborative resolution, it doesn't necessarily mean the divorce is always amicable. There are relationship experts who insist that there's no such thing; that the only thing you really can do is divorce well or divorce badly.

If we acknowledge that to be the case, we can say that collaborative law is meant to create the conditions under which a couple can divorce well. It calls on the parties in the dispute to take a more reasoned approach to settle issues related to finances, child custody, child support and property division.

The forms of collaboration vary. They might entail sharing the services of the various experts that may be needed. It might also acknowledge that some issues are too rife with tension to be resolved through that model or through mediation. In such cases, early neutral evaluation might be the right option.

ENE allows the couple to present their plans to a trained, neutral evaluator who can offer an opinion about how a judge would likely rule. The ENE opinion isn't binding, but has led to resolution without going to court in most cases.

The thing to remember is that options for getting through divorce are growing. Finding the one that best suits your situation is something that should be discussed with experienced attorneys. 

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