Puzzle The collaborative divorce process is in its infancy in Iowa.  It’s become highly popular in other states, and my hope is that it will become prevalent in Iowa in the not-too-distant future.  This process is a way for parties to come together in the best interest of themselves and their children, with their attorneys, a coach or therapist if needed or desired, and a financial neutral to craft a dissolution agreement that takes the concern about litigation out of the picture.  It is imperative that the financial professional truly be neutral to each part, and therefore is under an ethical responsibility to  have no involvement with the financial investments either prior to or after the case has ended.  It becomes a safe and comfortable place to explore avenues that are of the parties’ choosing and truly in the BEST interest of THEIR family.

Although it sounds like an expensive proposition, it’s been found to be very cost effective in comparison with litigation in other areas of the country.  It can be the same in Iowa as well.  It tends to become a much shorter process with one to just a few meetings.  In comparison with the traditional divorce process it can be much more efficient, educational and much less emotionally taxing for all parties involved.  This process provides a way for clients to ‘know and see’ that the agreement they have crafted, utilizing all of the facts that have been placed on the table, culminated in a equitable and fair adult agreement of the parties.

If collaborative could become the ‘new normal’ in divorce in the state of Iowa, there would be much less emotional gut wrenching for parties, their children and the extended families involved.  I would suggest anyone wanting to know more about the collaborative process visit the website for the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals.