Last week, representatives of the Collaborative Divorce Professionals of Southeast Michigan and Dads & Moms came together for a successful screening of the eye-opening documentary, “Divorce Corp” at The Maple Theater in Bloomfield.
The film explored the practices behind the $50 billion-per-year family law industry. It was followed by a panel discussion led by local experts in collaborative divorce.
“With 50 percent of marriages today ending in divorce, you want to make sure you do your divorce right,” said Danielle Smith of the Collaborative Divorce Professionals of Southeast Michigan and collaborative practice attorney from Michigan Divorce Options in Bloomfield Hills.
Collaborative divorce, as opposed to the well-known litigation divorce, is an amicable, less-contentious means of dissolving a marriage. The Collaborative Divorce Professionals of Southeast Michigan and Dads & Moms of Michigan believe that divorcing couples and their families are better served by avoiding the litigation process and keeping marriage dissolution out of the courtroom, and also believe that divorce litigation is harmful to couples and their children.
“Of couples who completed the collaborative divorce process, 78 percent reported satisfaction with the outcome, as opposed to a 30 percent satisfaction rate for couples who went through the ‘traditional’ litigation process,” said Randy Pitler of the Collaborative Divorce Professionals of Southeast Michigan and collaborative practice attorney from Pitler Family Law & Mediation, P.C., in Royal Oak.
With the collaborative process, the spouses control the process and make the final decisions and jointly retain the specialists, who provide information and guidance to the spouses to reach mutually beneficial decisions. With the litigation process, a judge controls the process and makes the final decision with each spouse hiring separate experts to support the process, often at great expense, both financially and emotionally.
Smith was joined on the panel by Pitler, and John Langlois, Executive Director of nonprofit organization Dads & Moms of Michigan, which was moderated by Dr. Judy Margerum, a Southfield-based psychologist specializing in the mental implications caused by divorce.
The Collaborative Divorce Professionals of Southeast Michigan are a group of professionals dedicated to helping divorcing couples and families divorce in the healthiest way possible. MichiganCollaborativeDivorce.com. Dads & Moms of Michigan is a nonprofit organization dedicated to bettering lives of children in bi-nuclear families through support and education that assist co-parents. DadsandMomsofMichigan.org.