In Singapore, Collaborative divorce is a dispute resolution process whereby divorcing couples negotiate for acceptable terms of dissolution without going through the costly and often lengthy process of a contested divorce in the Court. Each party hires their own collaborative trained top divorce lawyer.
The primary motives of a collaborative divorce are to help divorcing couples settle amicably and reach a satisfactory yet positive outcome for all parties involved. It avoids the social, emotional and economic strain that traditional divorce proceeding in Singapore can have, and also benefits the children of the dissolved marriage tremendously. Technically, collaborative divorce sits on these three principles:
- The couple pledge not to litigate in Court
- The couple promises to have an open, honest and voluntary approach towards the exchange of information
- The couple is committed to work towards solutions that are mutually-acceptable and protects the rights of both parties and their children.
There are many advantages to collaborative divorce, but here are 5 good reasons why divorcing couples should choose a collaborative divorce.
1) Collaborative divorce is less destructive to the family unit
The amicable manner that collaborative divorce works means that you and your soon-to-ex-spouse do not need to turn hostile and battle it out in Court to get what you want from the dissolved marriage. This also means that your children will not be dragged into court proceedings and do not have to listen to certain nasty things that you may say to each other. It preserves the family unit even if you are getting divorced, which makes future arrangements of joint/shared child custody easier to bear and fulfilled, all to the benefits of your children.
2) Collaborative divorce takes the views of both parties into consideration
When divorcing couples hire experienced collaborative divorce lawyers or certified divorce coaches, they will make sure that the couple have more control over what they consider, is the best positive outcome for both parties. Both parties will have chances to voice out their opinions and are encouraged to come to a compromise that is acceptable to both before a settlement is drawn up and filed as an uncontested divorce in Court.
3) Collaborative divorce takes emotions into consideration
A traditional divorce in Court means the process could be quite lengthy and eventually lead a judge to make the final decision while a collaborative divorce helps the divorcing couple to come to terms with their impending marriage dissolution and manages the emotions involved with open communications. Specially-trained top divorce lawyers and if needed, other family specialists such as child counsellors, will work together with both parties to settle the disputes so that emotions are well managed. This prevents bitter fall-outs which will in turn, benefit the family unit when a joint child custody is arranged.
4) Collaborative divorce ensures all information provided is “without prejudice”
All discussion and documents that are provided in a collaborative divorce is legally conducted on a “without prejudice” basis and all information provided during the process cannot be used in Court if a settlement cannot be reached. This prevents one party from pretending to engage in a collaborative process with the motive of obtaining information to be used against the other party in litigation.
5) Collaborative divorce settlement is private
In Singapore, any divorce that is presented and settled through Court will be public material for all. Therefore, a traditional divorce will have its settlement visible to anyone who wishes to gain access to it. In a collaborative divorce, the final settlement is private and will only be known to both parties, their lawyers involved and the Court. This provides privacy that can potentially protect your reputation and that of your children’s in the future.
Reach out to an Experienced Collaborative Lawyer
Seeking a divorce is not an easy decision and is one which should not be lightly taken. If you are in a situation where divorce is necessary, consider using the collaborative divorce process to dissolve the marriage amicably and retain the respect that you have for each other. Reach out to an experienced divorce lawyer trained in collaborative divorce to better understand if the process is suitable for you before considering the route of a traditional contested divorce in Singapore.