I caught sight of a piece on divorce in, of all places the Farmers Guardian. What’s more its a piece about Collaborative divorce. And I think it makes some good points.
Specifically, the piece looks at how a collaborative approach to divorce can be particularly beneficial to couples on a working farm, when they both have a vested interest in keeping the business running while going through difficult times personally. The collaborative approach can help diffuse situations and deal with divorce in a more measured way, with no need for time in court. The thinking is sound for all divorces which involve a business.
The collaborative approach still has some way to go in becoming as widely used in the UK as it is in, say, the States, from where it heralded. It essentially involves both parties taking legal advice from specially trained collaborative law solicitors and agreeing to reach a solution without going to court. They even sign an agreement to that effect.
Other professional parties can be involved as well, for instance accountants, landlords, financial advisers, so all the experts are brought together to work on an acceptable solution to all.
With a 50/50 split commonly being the starting point for division of assets on divorce, this can have a huge impact on business. In the worst case scenarios, businesses may have to be sold to ensure one party or the other walks away with their fair share. The collaborative approach can help avoid this. It may even allow estranged spouses, and their wider families, to continue working together once a divorce settlement is achieved.
The courts are not an effective way to deal with a business in a divorce. Employing the services of a collaborative lawyer will get you much further, faster and with a greater likelihood of a satisfactory outcome for all concerned.
Read more: Is a collaborative divorce right for me?