Divorce For Grown-Ups: How to Tell Your Spouse You Want a Divorce

The way you start your divorce sets the stage for everything that follows, and a bad start has the potential to derail what could otherwise be a good divorce.

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by | December 2, 2014 · 3:10 pm

Divorce For Grown-Ups: Good Divorce

Divorce does not have to be bad, ruining your life or the lives of your children. In fact, eschewing the adversarial divorce system and utilizing mediation often proves to be the key to a ‘good’ divorce: a divorce in which each side gets a fair shake, no one is left devastated, and everyone has the chance to thrive in their new lives.

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Divorce For Grown-Ups: What is Mediation?

Mediation emerged as a reform of an outdated adversary divorce system, working to resolve divorces in a fraction of the time and at a fraction of the cost of the traditional adversary divorce.

Music: “Perspectives” by Kevin MacLeod.
Available under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0
Download link: http://incompetech.com/music/royalty-free/mp3-royaltyfree/Perspectives.mp3

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Divorce For Grown-Ups: Everything Wrong With American Divorce

The traditional adversary divorce system and modern no-fault divorce  distorts the ability of families to adapt to divorce. The system has evolved for the benefit of lawyers at the expense of divorcing couples so that divorce frequently involves unnecessary pains and expense.

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The 10 Most Common Ways to Sabotage Your Divorce

How can you assure that you have a healthy, positive divorce? That both partners can move forward as quickly as possible into their new and productive lives?  The answer lies in your own self restraint and not doing the things that convince your spouse that you are going to play dirty — because if you are going to do it, then so is your spouse.   The ten worst (and most common) ways to damage your divorce are related to this.   Continue reading

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What are my rights during my divorce?

facing_divorcePeople faced with divorce tend to ask the same first question: What are my legal rights? Although at first glance this might seem the most important question, in reality it isn’t. Why not? Your rights, as established by law, are so vague as to be almost meaningless. Let’s review them.

Your rights concern three issues: children, income and division of marital assets. Continue reading

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Mediating Disputes with Unmarried Couples

1415226_75362337Divorce mediation has evolved as a way to help married couples who wish to divorce to negotiate satisfactory settlements in lieu of struggling with litigation. And because marriage is an institution in which laws establish obligations and entitlements the resolution of such legal constraints as a condition of divorce makes divorce mediation appear dominated by legal concerns. But, in fact, most divorcing couples do not have issues of complex legal doctrines. Rather most middle class people have a lot of practical problems to solve, namely all the issues around how to efficiently use the resources of the family to optimize the welfare of all members of the family. The slowly growing popularity of divorce mediation reflects a growing recognition that the adversarial legal system often gets in the way of expeditious problem solving. Continue reading

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The Successful Marriage and Finding Balance: Pay Attention

 

ID-10044762Over the past twenty .years three thousand couples have explained to me why they are ending their marriages. This large sample offers some window into why marriages fail  Perhaps it also suggests some warning signs for couples to consider. Continue reading

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A cautionary tale: Beware divorce lawyers and bad advice

Whether or not this story specifically resembles your divorce, the lessons within touch on the significance of how bad advice and divorce attorneys’ expensive maneuvering can leave you in dire financial distress.

sam_mediation_photoJeff Master and his wife Janet were living in North Carolina when Janet asked for a divorce.  Jeff called to make an appointment with me, and three days later they were sitting in my office for our first meeting.  Married nineteen years and with two children, ages 11 and 16, Jeff owned a building supply business that had been started by his grandfather and gifted to Jeff by his father who had run the store for forty years. Janet had not worked in fifteen years having chosen to be a stay at home mother. Jeff was 50 and Janet was 47. Both appeared fit and attractive. Like so many other couples they told me a story about a marriage that had gone stale so that both felt they had grown apart. There had been one short round of marriage counseling. Janet had finally told Jeff she didn’t want any more counseling and wanted a divorce. Jeff did not want a divorce and felt that they could fix the marriage with more counseling and a lot of prayer. But Janet had made up her mind and was clear that the marriage was over. Continue reading

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Collaborative divorce and mediation. Are they the same thing?

lawyers_texts_lawOver the past fifteen years a movement called “collaborative law” has grown quickly in the American divorce system. As many people seem to confuse collaborative law with mediation I thought it would be useful to explore the differences. Continue reading

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