Washington Collaborative Divorce Lawyer In Renton
Collaborative Divorce Lawyers Committed to Peaceful Conflict Resolution
The Renton, Washington collaborative divorce lawyers at Truce Law can help you file for divorce without ever having to step foot in a courtroom. The collaborative divorce process allows you to work out your divorce agreement at the negotiating table rather than in court and your collaborative divorce lawyer can utilize conflict resolution strategies to help you and your former partner settle your divorce. Collaborative divorce can save you money in court fees, allowing you to invest where it matters: in parenting coaches, financial planners, and other experts who can guide you as you work through some of the toughest challenges divorce can bring.
Divorce is one of the most difficult decisions a couple might ever have to make. Yet, while divorce is a highly personal decision, it is also a legal one, requiring formal decisions about how to divide assets, property, and debts. If you have children, you’ll also be required to craft a parenting plan that formalizes your decisions about child custody and shared parenting time. A collaborative divorce lawyer in Renton, Washington at Truce Law can help you understand your rights as you and your former partner negotiate your divorce agreement. Even if you and your former partner agree about many aspects of your divorce settlement, a collaborative divorce attorney in Renton, Washington can help you formalize your agreement, make sure you cross all your Ts, and assist you should any disagreements arise.
Traditionally, when couples hire a divorce lawyer, their attorneys will proceed as if preparing for a court battle. The reality is that most of all divorces are settled outside of court. Couples might take their disagreements to a judge, only to be sent to mediation or asked to work out their disagreements in private with the help of their lawyers.
When you choose the collaborative divorce process in Renton, Washington, you start where these couples end up, potentially saving you thousands of dollars. Truce Law is a Renton, Washington collaborative divorce law firm committed to helping clients settle their divorces through peaceful conflict resolution. We are skilled in the art of negotiation. Contact Truce Law to help you settle your divorce without the need for a costly and stressful court battle. Best of all, we can file you divorce paperwork electronically or by the mail, so that you and your former partner don’t even have to step foot in a courtroom.
Leslie E. Beauregard, Attorney
What is the Collaborative Divorce Process Like in Renton, Washington?
In many ways, collaborative divorce is like a conventional divorce. With collaborative divorce, you and your former partner will each be represented by your own attorneys. And like traditional divorce proceedings, both you and your former partner will need to reach a divorce agreement, where you decide how you’ll divide debts, properties, and other assets. If you have children, you’ll need to decide about child custody and formalize these decisions in a parenting plan. You’ll still need to file divorce papers with the court. The biggest difference between collaborative divorce and “traditional” divorce is that you and your former partner will agree to reach a divorce settlement at the negotiating table rather than in the courtroom. Before you begin, both you and your former partner will sign a “collaborative participation agreement” in which you both agree to settle any disagreements about your divorce agreement outside court.
By agreeing to settle your divorce at the negotiating table rather than take these disagreements to a judge, you can save money and time. Most importantly, you won’t be leaving important decisions about your children or financial life up to a judge to decide. When it comes to making decisions about your children and your marital assets, the best people to make those choices are you and your former partner, not a judge.
The Renton, Washington collaborative divorce lawyers at Truce Law pride ourselves on creating an environment where you, your former spouse, and your divorce team (which can include therapists, parenting coaches, financial planners, accountants, marriage counselors, and more) can work together to craft a divorce agreement that is fair for all parties involved. Because you’ll save money by not going to court, you can put your resources toward hiring experts and counselors who can help you iron out the details of your divorce agreement. A divorce agreement cannot be changed once it has been finalized by the courts, and it can be very difficult to change a parenting plan once a judge approves it. Truce Law is a Renton, Washington collaborative divorce law firm committed to helping you get it right.
Risks of Divorcing in Court in Renton, Washington
There are some major risks of taking your divorce to court. For one, you run the risk that the judge will make decisions about your parenting plan, your finances, and your future, that neither you nor your former partner want. In many cases, a judge will likely order mediation, meaning that you’ll still end up at the negotiating table, and must hire an extra professional (the mediator) when you get there.
Research indicates that children fare better emotionally, psychologically, and mentally when their parents aren’t in conflict. Parents who take their parenting plans to a judge to decide might still harbor resentments about decisions that are made by the judge. When it comes to co-parenting, cooperation and compromise are the keys. By working with a Renton, Washington collaborative divorce lawyer at Truce Law, you’ll receive the tools you need to reach a co-parenting agreement that works for your family and is truly in the best interests of your children.
When parents take their child custody battles to court, a judge will ultimately use Washington’s best interests of the child standard to determine custody. Yet, this standard is quite vague and open to wide interpretation, meaning that the outcome of a “best interests of the child” custody determination can differ widely from judge to judge. In short, a parenting plan that is in the best interests of the child is one that furthers a child’s emotional growth, health, and stability, and promotes the physical care of the child while nurturing a relationship with both parents, unless a relationship with one parent threatens the child’s emotional, physical, or mental health.
Parents are in the best position to make these decisions for their children. When you choose the collaborative divorce process in Renton, Washington, you’ll work with a collaborative divorce lawyer at Truce Law to help you and your former partner make decisions that work for your family. We are here to help.
How Collaborative Divorce Can Help You with Retirement Accounts in Renton, Washington
If you or your former partner work in one of the major industries in Renton, Washington, you or your partner may have a pension, or you may share a retirement plan. Other than the family home, a pension or retirement plan is often a family’s most valuable asset. Even if the pension plan or retirement account might be in only one partner’s name, any increases in value, or contributions to the plan made during a marriage can be considered shared marital property or assets, and therefore subject to division during divorce. Whether you and your partner have an IRA, 401(k), or employment-based pension plan, dividing retirement accounts can be complicated. The way these accounts can be divided will depend on the type of plan you have, how long you had the plan before you were married (or whether you started the plan during your marriage), and whether the plan offers lump-sum payments, monthly annuities, and whether the plan includes benefit payments for the life of your surviving spouse.
In some cases, divorcing couples just choose to split retirement savings right down the middle, but it’s important to note that you can’t just draw money out of a retirement account without potentially facing tax penalties. The IRS has strict rules for how divorcing couples need to proceed when splitting retirement accounts.
For example, you’ll need to get a Qualified Domestic Relations Order to order the plan to pay benefits (or a portion of benefits) to your spouse or children. In other instances, one partner might keep his or her retirement account or pension, while the other partner might keep other similarly valued assets like the family home or savings. In this case, you may still need to contact your employer or retirement plan administrator to file change of beneficiary forms.
Splitting retirement accounts can get complicated, but by using the collaborative divorce process in Renton, Washington, Truce Law can help you and your former partner reach an agreement that allows you both to prepare for retirement. You’ve worked hard to save for retirement. A Renton, Washington collaborative divorce lawyer at Truce Law can help you understand the many options that may be available to you and your former partner and help you negotiate the best way forward.
Benefits of Collaborative Divorce in Renton, Washington
There are many benefits of choosing collaborative divorce in Renton, Washington, chief among them the fact that you’ll avoid unnecessary conflict by choosing a more peaceful way to get divorced. You’ll also likely save money, time, and protect your privacy. Going to court costs money, and there’s always the risk that the judge will order mediation, meaning you’ll need to hire one more professional to help you negotiate your divorce settlement. By choosing the collaborative process, your collaborative divorce lawyer in Renton, Washington can help you file for divorce by mail or electronically, eliminating the legal costs of fighting your divorce in court. This can also save you time. Collaborative divorce also protects your privacy. Anything you say in court can end up on the public record. If emotions get heated in the courtroom, everything said can become public knowledge. The collaborative divorce process happens in private and you and your spouse can keep the details of your divorce agreement private. This can protect your sensitive financial information and ensure that should emotions get heated during the negotiation process, details of your private life won’t be out in the open.
The Renton, Washington collaborative divorce lawyers at Truce Law are here to help you file for divorce. We can walk you through the divorce negotiation process and help you with every step required to file for divorce. Best of all, once you reach an agreement, we can file your paperwork electronically or by mail, eliminating the need for you or your former partner ever having to step foot in a courtroom. Divorce is never easy, but there is an easier way. Contact the collaborative divorce lawyers in Renton, Washington at Truce Law today to learn more about our process and methods.