As noted in my initial blog about collaborative law, one distinction of a Collaborative Divorce from a tradition adversarial divorce is the role of the divorce coach. In a collaborative divorce, the parties agree to a divorce coach, typically a mental health professional, who helps guide the parties through the process. The coach has had collaborative law and mediation training and ideally experience with family therapy and great communication skills. The role of the neutral coach is to help the parties cope with the emotional and psychological challenges of a divorce but it is not to become a therapist for either of the parties.
The coach facilitates meetings and helps manage the emotions that sometime run very high during a divorce. The coach may be able to help both parties see the other side’s viewpoint and call out behavior that may trigger a reaction in the other party. The coach maintains neutrality throughout the process and can refer the parties to individual therapists if needed.
The coach also keeps the process moving forward by scheduling meetings and selecting what issues to address at the meeting such as parenting plan or financial support. Ideally the coach helps the couple stay focused on goals and working towards a resolution. In addition, the coach works with the other collaborative members of the team to address issues as they arise and schedule meetings if needed.
If a divorce coach assisting you through your divorce, sounds like something that would work for you, please contact us for more information about collaborative law divorces.
Held Law Firm attorney, Melanie Hogg, is trained in the collaborative divorce process and is a member of the East Tennessee Collaborative Alliance. Call 865-685-4780 to schedule a case assessment with Melanie.