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Frequently Asked Divorce Questions
by Linda L. Piff, Attorney at Law of Linda L. Piff, Attorney at Law


I'm getting divorced and my children are in college. Will I be required to pay their tuition and housing costs?
In New Jersey divorcing couples are required to provide for their children's college. However, in a collaborative case we explore the options for the couple that meet their financial concerns.

Does a Collaborative Divorce cost less than a traditional divorce or mediation?
Collaborative Divorce is less expensive than divorce litigation. It is approximately one-third the costs of a traditional litigated divorce.

How do I get my partner to agree to the Collaborative Divorce process?
You can give your partner some information on collaborative law that you receive at the time of your initial consult. You can also direct your partner to the web site: www.collaborativepratice.com. In addition, you can consult with a divorce coach and discuss the benefits of collaborative practice. The divorce coaches are listed on the same website by regions.

How is Collaborative Divorce Process better for our children?
It permits the parties to communicate about the children and learn how to co-parent while divorced. It also attempts to reach the goals of both parties who are concerned about the security and well-being of their children.

How long does a Collaborative Divorce take from beginning to end?
Every divorce case is different. However The average length of time for a collaborative divorce is 6 months from beginning to end.

My spouse already has filed papers with the Court. Can we still choose the Collaborative process to get our divorce?
Yes you can. Your collaborative attorneys can agree to dismiss the Complaint while you work on settling your case through the collaborative divorce process. You can then reinstate your Complaint to put through an uncontested divorce.

What are some of the financial challenges for those over 50 getting divorced?
The challenges are due to the couple over 50 experiencing the"perfect storm" with the economy in a significant downturn and the couple nearing retirement. The couple who is over 50 does not have the same amount of time to recover from the economic downturn as the younger divorcing couples. The home may not have equity so it becomes difficult for the parties to move on and purchase another home. The retirement accounts may have lost significant value and the couple cannot make up the loss before their planned retirement date. The couple experiences serious concerns about their ability to retire at the age they previously planned to do. The couple may also have children attending college with no ability to borrow to fund the college due to tightening of credit by the lending agencies. There are also complicated issues to resolve relating to a pension if one or both parties have a pension in pay status.

What is the Collaborative Divorce Team?
The Collaborative Divorce Team is a team of collaboratively trained professionals including family law attorneys, divorce coaches, and financial specialists with whom you and your spouse work with to resolve the issues in your Collaborative divorce.

If there are children, normally a collaborative coach is employed. The coach is a mental health professional who will help the parties develop a parenting plan and assist the parties in communicating about the children during the process. In addition the coach is available after the divorce to make changes to the parenting plan if any changes are needed.

A financial professional is employed as part of the team if there is a business that needs to be valued. The accountant's fees are less than those in a traditional divorce because the accountant is jointly retained and works with both parties to develop the report for the valuation of the business.

A certified financial planner may be used if there is a need to develop a budget for both parties or to assist a spouse in understanding his/her needs for support after divorce.


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