Mediations & Collaborative Divorce

Working Together for a Less Stressful and Less Costly Divorce Resolution

When most people think about divorce, they typically imagine a hateful and contentious process playing itself out in the form of a high-stakes courtroom battle. This perception, propagated by TV and movie dramas, is in fact more often the exception to the rule than the prototypical divorce experience.

While it is true that there are plenty of cases that demand a more aggressive, litigated approach, there are plenty of alternatives to settling your divorce-related disputes in the courtroom. Two of the most popular and effective forms of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) are known as mediated divorce and collaborative divorce.

At Klein & Babbitt, we will seek to understand your unique circumstances and goals, and we will help you explore all of your divorce options in order to find the process that best suits your needs. If litigation is the best approach for your situation, then we will serve as your devoted advocate in the courtroom. If you decide that mediation or collaborative law is more appropriate for your needs, we will passionately guide you every step of the way to help you achieve the best possible result.

What’s the Difference Between Litigation and Mediation or Collaborative Divorce?

Both mediation and collaborative divorce seek to motivate and guide the divorcing couple towards coming up with mutually beneficial resolutions to issues you face in a divorce like child custody, division of property, and any other key decisions that must be made in order to execute the dissolution. In a litigated divorce, each spouse takes a position and must fight against the wishes of the opposing party in order to achieve their goals. In a mediated or collaborative divorce, the couples are instead placed in a non adversarial position where they can achieve more creative and mutually beneficial outcomes.


The mediation process is guided by Klein & Babbitt’s  neutral third-party mediators who are trained to help couples come to mutually acceptable divorce terms on their own. The divorcing spouses do not have a lawyer representing them in the mediation sessions, and the process is much less formal than litigation. However, mediation can actually be mixed with litigation in resolving various sticking points in your divorce. The attorneys at Klein & Babbitt often mediate issue specific conflicts from matters in existing litigation. After all, you and your spouse may be able to agree on certain elements like child custody but unable to agree on something else like who gets to keep the house. Mediation is oftentimes a less expensive alternative to litigation. Mediation affords a great deal of flexibility and privacy to those whose circumstances allow for the use of mediation.

Collaborative Divorce

As with mediation, a collaborative divorce involves sessions where the divorcing couple sits down and works to achieve the best possible resolutions that can work for everyone involved. The key difference is that each spouse and their collaborative attorneys sign a pledge to act in good faith and not to litigate any aspect of the divorce. By removing the threat of litigation as a negotiating tactic, couples are oftentimes more motivated to compromise and seek to understand the needs of the opposing spouse. In the Collaborative model, the focus is on what is best for the family, rather than for each individual.   In this process, separate attorneys represent each side.  As with mediation, the goal is to work together to minimize costs and create healthier post-divorce relationships.

If warranted, you can also bring in experts to resolve disagreements. For instance, if you get into a custody argument, you can hire a therapist.  If you are fighting over a family business issue, you can bring in a consultant or a financial advisor.

If agreement cannot be reached or either party violates the good faith agreement, the attorneys for both parties must withdraw from the case.  Klein & Babbitt’s attorneys are trained in collaborative law and experienced in advocating in the collaborative model.  Let us help you advocate for your rights in the collaborative process.

Our attorneys have a wealth of experience representing clients in all forms of divorce, including mediation and collaborative divorce. For those seeking to avoid court or minimize the adversarial impact of their divorce, these alternatives to litigation can be a great option. Our team will help you understand all of your options—including litigation, mediation, and collaborative law—and advise you on the best course of action based on your unique circumstances and goals. No matter which route you choose, we will zealously advocate for you and work towards the best possible outcome in your case. Contact us today to get started.