PROCESS OPTIONS AVAILABLE TO
TERMINATE A MARRIAGE
are a number of different ways to go about terminating a marriage.
In Florida, the two most common legal approaches are divorce and
dissolution of marriage.
Dissolution of marriage is the termination of the marriage by the
Judge or by the parties written agreement.
the couple enters into a Marital Settlement Agreement which details
their agreement regarding parenting issues, parenting support
issues, the division of assets and liabilities, and spousal support
they are keeping it out of the Judge's hands and keeping all control
in their hands. It the parents agree to Shared Parenting, a Shared
Parenting Plan is also executed. After the parties each file the
Petition for Dissolution of Marriage and Separation Agreement, a
brief hearing is held before a Judge. At that time, the parties
affirm the Separation Agreement.
The Separation Agreement terms are reached through negotiation.
It is always better if you can reach a negotiated settlement. A
negotiated settlement insures that both you and your spouse are in
control of the reconfiguration of your financial future. It also
insures that the two of you, and not a court official, are making
decisions concerning future parenting issues. A negotiated
settlement can be done at your own pace and with maximum privacy. A
couple can use a number of different process options to reach an
agreements. These options include "the kitchen table", mediation,
Collaborative Family Law, and lawyer negotiation.
I. The Kitchen Table
Some couples are able to sit down "at the kitchen table" to sort
through their issues and reach agreements. It is advisable for both
to have had had prior consultations with lawyers so that they each
have some understanding of the nature of their rights and
obligations. This process tends to work well in very uncomplicated
cases. Where couples are dividing up pension plans or there are
complex legal issues, there may be difficulty with this approach.
For some, it may be possible, to the resolve some issues at "the
kitchen table", although not all.
This type of negotiation can be problematic where one spouse
feels less powerful than the other and may feel coerced into an
In a mediated case, a couple meets with a mediator who serves as
a third-party neutral. The mediator can be an attorney or mental
health professional. It is recommended that the Husband and Wife
each have attorneys who can provide advice and counsel during the
time the couple is in mediation. In most situations, the attorneys
are not present in the mediation sessions, although they can be at
the discretion of the mediator and/or Husband or Wife. The mediator
uses a structured problem solving process to assist the couple in
reaching an agreement. The mediator does not give legal advice nor
does he or she serve as a decision-maker for the couple. In Ohio,
the mediator does not draft the final documents required by the
court or take the case through the court system.
III. Collaborative Family
In a Collaborative Family Law case, a Husband and Wife each
retain attorneys who have received special training in the
principles of win/win (interest based) negotiation and collaborative
strategies. There is a shared negotiation choreography. Much of the
process takes place in four-way meetings that are structured to
promote an exchange of ideas and interests that ultimately allow the
couple to create options for the settlement of the case. The
environment allows for structured problem-solving and improved
communication between the parties. In some cases, trained mental
health professionals and financial planners provide input and
assistance in the process. At the inception of the process, both
clients and lawyers sign a contract that the lawyers will not
litigate in the event of impasse. If the case reaches impasse and
all settlement options are exhausted, both parties must retain other
counsel to litigate.
At its essence: A commitment to a principled, negotiated
settlement, following established protocols and an established
choreography without the threat or use of court action. For more
information about Collaborative Family Law go to www.collabarativelaw.com
IV. Lawyer Negotiation
create and circulate proposals.
Firm Overview |
Practice Areas |
Child Support |
Custody Issues |
Family Law |
Visitation Rights |
Child Custody |
Legal Separations |
Prenuptial Agreements |
Estate Planning |
Wills, Trust & Probate
Profit Corporation & Organization Law |
Related Litigation |
| Collaborative Law |
| Contact Us
Site designed and hosted by
All information compiled on this
website is provided as a public service and for general informational purposes
only. The information available through this website is not legal advice.. It
should not be relied upon for any type of legal action, nor considered to be
legal advice. No warranties, expressed or implied, are provided for the accuracy
of the data herein, its use or its interpretation. All data contained herein is
subject to change without notice. We shall not be liable for any demand or
claim, regardless of form or action, arising out of or incident to the posting
of information or data on this website, the accessing or use of any information
or data on this website, and/or the acts or omissions of any person or entity
accessing or using any information from this website.