Using Non-attorney Professionals in a Divorce

In almost any divorce that involves a sizeable marital estate, a troubled parenting plan, or other complex issues, we look to incorporate various professionals to help resolve as many of those issues as possible.  For instance, when a man and wife have retirement accounts they have either earned or contributed to over the many years of their marriage, having these accounts investigated and uncovered is crucial to any settlement and just and right division.  The general population has no idea how different each account can be, even down to whether or not an account is divisible or not.  On the surface, it is not easy for attorneys to discern that either, so we rely on other specialists to advise us.  A divorce financial professional can easily verify the character of each account and help the client understand the nuances of each account, including what domestic relations orders the plan administrators will need to effectively divide certain accounts.

As another instance, consider the man and wife who are having difficulty coming up with an agreed schedule for their kids who now face separating parents.  There are many wonderful counselors, social workers, and psychologists who can help the couple establish a reasonable parenting plan that will benefit the children involved.  These fine professionals help couples come to agreements as to geographic restrictions, possession, and access, as well as how to share the rights and duties of a parent.

I love doing collaborative law cases where the parties agree to utilize a financial professional and a mental health professional during the course of settlement talks and negotiations.  I find these parties have more successful results down the road because the allied professionals ensure the parties have the tools to succeed.  It allows everyone to communicate on the same level and with the same vocabulary, and more importantly, it keeps the parties on a road to success.

These non-attorney professionals can be used outside of the collaborative law process, too, if the parties choose to enlist their help.  It is such a great gesture for the parties to agree to use a single neutral party to help them understand difficult issues through the divorce process, instead of each party hiring its own competing professional.

There are ways to resolve the high conflict in a divorce without having to go to court at every turn.  I would encourage you to ask your lawyer questions about collaborative law, cooperative law, and other ways to mitigate the conflict that usually accompanies a divorce.  For more information about collaborative, please visit to see other practitioners and neutrals located in Denton County.

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