You may have heard the term “amicable divorce,” but are unclear as to what it means and if it could be a good option for you and your spouse to choose in your upcoming California divorce. Greenbush Financial explains that an amicable divorce is one in which you and your spouse part company on a reasonably friendly and cooperative basis rather than fighting each other in a long drawn out court battle.
You and your spouse have two options for obtaining an amicable divorce: mediation and collaboration.
If you and your spouse choose to obtain a mediated divorce, neither of you will have to hire an attorney, although you can if you want to. Instead, you hire a mutually agreed upon neutral mediator who represents neither of you, but instead serves as your guide throughout the mediation process. (S)he will provide you with a neutral, nonthreatening place in which the three of you will meet for the purpose of you and your spouse resolving your own issues through negotiation with each other. (S)he will also make sure that neither of you intimidates or disrespects the other during these meetings.
Mediation gives you and your spouse the opportunity to make your own decisions about resolving your differences rather than leaving these resolutions up to a judge.
If you both feel the need to be represented by an attorney during your divorce, you may wish to choose a collaborative divorce instead of a mediated one. Here each of you hires your own attorney just like you would do in a traditional litigated divorce. But the similarity ends there. Neither attorney sees himself or herself as an adversary, nor will either of them advocate that you and your spouse fight each other in court.
Instead, a collaborative divorce works basically the same way as a mediated one. Only here all four of you attend the joint meetings. You and your spouse still have the opportunity to resolve your own issues, but each of you has your attorney at your side at all times to represent your best interests.
Whether you and your spouse choose a mediated or a collaborative divorce, you undoubtedly will greatly appreciate the cooperative atmosphere in which each takes place. Both processes allow you to be the reasonable, responsible adults you actually are rather then encouraging you to to show your respective worst sides. But probably the greatest advantage of an amicable divorce is that your children will not be put in the position of being in the middle of two warring parents.
This is general educational information and not intended to provide legal advice.