Texas Collaborative Divorce Attorneys

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Working Together to Protect Your Family’s Interests

Even though your marriage is ending, you and your spouse most likely want to protect your children from the stress and conflict of divorce and preserve your financial assets to the greatest extent possible. In addition, you probably share the goal of avoiding the emotional and financial costs of a litigated divorce. If these things are important to you, working with a Collaborative Divorce attorney may be the right option for your family. 

What is a Collaborative Divorce?

From anger and sadness to worry about the future, divorce evokes strong emotions. Yet, even with emotions running high, most couples agree that they want to minimize the negative impact divorce will have on their children and their finances.

Collaborative Divorce – also known as the collaborative law process – is a specially designed legal process that enables the spouses to retain greater control over the outcome by committing to resolve the divorce outside of court.

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When is Collaborative Divorce a Good Option?

Collaborative Divorce is an option for divorcing spouses who agree to keep their case out of the courtroom and who historically have been able to make important decisions together. Most people feel better about solutions they had a hand in creating rather than having solutions imposed upon them. Couples who choose the collaborative model retain and equally share control over the decisions that will affect their future lives instead of handing that power over to a judge or jury.

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What Are Key Advantages of a Collaborative Divorce?

The key advantages of a Collaborative Divorce include:

  • Increased Privacy and Confidentiality: Collaborative cases are private and confidential, and the outcomes are controlled by the divorcing couple rather than by a judge.
  • Increased Control. Collaborative Divorce participants do not rely on the courts, judges, or rules of procedure to set deadlines or timelines for the case. Collaborative Divorces set their timelines according to the shared decisions of the spouses.
  • Reduced Conflict: Although emotions frequently remain strong, the level of overt hostility in a Collaborative Divorce is drastically reduced as a byproduct of the process itself. Everyone involved, including the lawyers, are highly motivated by the shared goals of achieving a mutually-agreeable resolution that minimizes additional harm to relationships or the estate. 

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How Does a Collaborative Divorce Work?

The signing of the Participation Agreement and the contractually agreed-upon boundaries that are put in place as part of it serve to promote a safe environment that is characterized by confidentiality, mutual respect, and control over the outcome. At the same time, the threat of the courtroom is eliminated.

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How Long Does a Collaborative Divorce Take?

The spouses in a Collaborative Divorce will participate in a series of preplanned, face-to-face meetings with a team consisting of their lawyers, along with a neutral mental health professional, and a neutral financial professional. The joint meetings are typically limited to two hours in length and occur on a schedule determined by the clients’ needs and desires. The average collaborative case usually resolves in four to six joint meetings.

What is the Difference Between Collaborative Divorce and Mediation?

Although both Collaborative Divorce and mediation are confidential, non-adversarial methods of resolving family law conflicts without going to court, the similarities end there. Mediation is a process that typically takes place over the course of one or two long days lasting 10 to 12 hours. A neutral third person called a mediator meets privately with each party and his or her attorney over the course of the day to gather information, explore options, and facilitate a binding agreement.

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What is Unique About Collaborative Divorce?

The Collaborative Divorce model is completely different than the traditional litigation model for divorce, and it is both established by, and protected by, Texas law. Once the spouses “opt in” to the collaborative process by signing the Participation Agreement, the judge legally cannot interfere with the divorce process, except in very limited circumstances.

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How a Collaborative Divorce Attorney Can Help You

If you are considering a legal action such as divorce, a contested property division or a child custody modification, Goranson Bain Ausley can help you formulate a strategy that will move you toward a successful outcome. With a seasoned team that includes former judges and some of the state’s most respected family law attorneys, we offer you a clear perspective that will help you decide whether it is best to pursue your objectives through litigation, Collaborative Divorce, or other alternative dispute resolution methods.

Our Experienced Collaborative Divorce Attorneys

Goranson Bain Ausley lawyers are leaders in Texas in the Collaborative Divorce process. Over 50 % of our lawyers have been collaboratively trained and have supported many Austin, Plano, and Dallas families with Collaborative Divorces. We empower families to find productive, customized solutions to help them face the future with confidence. Contact a Collaborative Divorce attorney today to learn more about your legal options. Goranson Bain Ausley has three office locations in Dallas, Plano, and Austin.


Curtis W. Harrison

The Minimally-Invasive Divorce

Today, surgeons deliver “minimally-invasive” procedures that have folks in and out faster than a TSA security pat-down. So why do we still languish in the dark ages when it comes to the law? More particularly, why do so many people still rely on stone knives and bear skins when getting a divorce? The court system simply was never designed to resolve the increasingly complex dynamics of family conflict.


Esther R. Donald

What’s Better About a Collaborative Divorce?

In this video, Esther explains how a Collaborative Divorce allows clients to divorce in a dignified and respectful manner and maintain control of decision-making, expenses, and the timeline of their divorce


Esther R. Donald, Curtis W. Harrison

Goranson Bain Ausley Partners Recognized with Mark of Excellence for Collaborative Divorce

Curtis Harrison and Esther Donald Obtain Credentialing in Collaborative Divorce. Goranson Bain Ausley proudly announces that two of the firm’s…


Side view of mother preparing food, daughter sitting on kitchen counter.

Kristen A. Algert

Top 10 Reasons for a Collaborative Divorce in Texas

Collaborative Divorce  is a specially designed legal process that enables the spouses to retain greater control over the outcome by committing to resolve the divorce outside of court.

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