Collaborative Divorce

As your collaborative divorce lawyer, I represent you as part of a team of caring professionals dedicated to helping you and your spouse experience a dignified, more holistic divorce process. The team provides support and guidance and looks out for your interests and those of your children. We help you move forward and stay out of court.

The Collaborative Divorce Team

The collaborative divorce team may be small – just you and your collaborative lawyers – or, depending on your particular situation, the team may also include:

  • divorce coaches – mental health professionals who assist with communication and parenting issues
  • child specialists – mental health professionals who help you find the best parenting plans for your child
  • financial neutrals – financial professionals who assist you in dividing assets and allocating support in a way that meets the needs of your entire family

You and your spouse can choose to jointly retain additional impartial professionals specializing in employment, education, mortgages, and real estate.

Collaborative Attorneys Will Not Litigate

Your collaborative attorneys will not take part in any adversarial court proceedings between you and your spouse. Both collaborative lawyers promise beforehand not to go to court, even if you don’t reach an agreement. The lawyers will not participate in any future litigation concerning your divorce.

The Benefits of Interest-Based Negotiation

Your collaborative team will apply its collective professional expertise to address your issues using “interest-based negotiation.” You and your spouse will explore and come to understand your interests and needs, not just state your positions.

How does interest-based negotiation work? Here’s an example.

If one of you says that you want to keep the house, your collaborative team will help both of you understand what the deeper concerns might be. They might include continuity for the children… a sense of community in the neighborhood… the fact that you lovingly restored the house… that it’s a place you can afford… or even that moving would mean giving up the dog. Once you each understand what the underlying needs and concerns really are, you can address them constructively.

Interest-based negotiation removes the “winners and losers” factor. It helps reduce hostility, separates emotions from facts, fosters constructive discussion of creative alternatives, and promotes your ownership of the ultimate solution. The aim is to forge a lasting agreement that meets your family’s needs.


Collaborative divorce attorney, negotiated divorce settlements, family and business dispute mediation, uncontested divorce, and parenting coordination services for clients across Northern Virginia, including Fairfax, Arlington, Loudoun, and Prince William counties, and communities of Alexandria, Arlington, Centerville, Chantilly, Dulles, Falls Church, Great Falls, Herndon, Lorton, Manassas, McLean, Mount Vernon, Reston, Springfield, Tysons Corner, and Vienna; office located in the City of Falls Church, inside the Beltway (495) and I-66.
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