HCBA Lawyer Magazine Vol. 28, No. 2 | Page 23

FROM THE JudgE: MY Own COLLABORATivE divORCE Collaborative law Section Chairs: Tina Tenret - ProVise Management Group & Ellie Probasco - Probasco Law M © Can Stock Photo / alexskopje y own collaborative divorce process wrapped up in March, and honestly, I can’t thank my ex- husband’s attorney enough for recommending it. Let me set the stage for you. I was running for election for circuit court judge and campaigning against a very formidable opponent, all while trying to manage my practice at a large law firm. I received a call from a lawyer who calmly informed me that my husband wanted a divorce after thirty years of marriage. I was stunned. During that fifteen-minute conversation, my whole world fell apart. How could I possibly handle my practice, the campaign, and the stigma of a divorce and its potentially negative effects on my election? How would I tell my campaign finance committee, my supporters, the voters, and my campaign consultant, who stressed the importance of family support for any candidate in an election? Above all, how would I tell my children? As this surreal and seemingly endless conversation came to a close, the attorney informed me that my ex-husband wanted to make every effort to preserve my chance for election. She suggested that I join him in considering a more private, less combative method of resolution called NOV - DEC 2017 friends and to “collaborative be reciprocal divorce.” Both support for each confused and other generally relieved, I and in crises, promptly such as the recent researched the Hurricane Irma. collaborative These trained process. After profes sionals kept my research and us focused on the much reflection, end game and my ex-husband At the end of the day, the best interest and I opted to of our children proceed with while both of us felt that and did not allow the collaborative we each gave up more us to succumb to process, which greed or revenge. we both now than we should have, At the end of the agree was a very the inequity was far day, while both good decision. exceeded by the of us felt that How we each gave collaborative emotional peace of mind, up more than divorce works our ongoing positive we should have, and what it the inequity was involves varies; relationship, and the far exceeded by there is a money saved in litigation the emotional wide range of peace of mind, flexi