Rachel Levitsky Rachel Levitsky
Collaborative law, like mediation, is a dispute resolution process based on a shared commitment of the parties to search for resolutions that meet the needs of both clients without the threat of litigation. Collaborative Practice is different from mediation in that there is the opportunity to work with other professions on an interdisciplinary team.
In a collaborative divorce, both parties must be willing to participate with one another in face to face meetings with the assistance of their lawyers and other team members to communicate honestly and directly. It is designed to reduce conflict and to help the clients consider creative solutions that fit their specific circumstances and goals.
There are two types of mental health professionals that may be part of the interdisciplinary team. I am trained in both of these disciplines.
- Divorce Coach: The role of the divorce coach is to identify the concerns of the client, provide emotional support around the stressors of coping with a divorce, assist the client in making a parenting plan, and to facilitate the collaborative process so that the team understands the client's emotional state. As your divorce coach my goal would be to provide support and to help you to move through the difficult divorce process as efficiently as possible. I will help the team to understand your perspective so that you feel your needs and interests are prioritized .People enduring a divorce are often feeling like they are in crisis. A divorce coach, unlike a therapist, deals with the present and future and focuses on issues such as grief, loss, and renewal that are specific to divorce. Coaches may and should be utilized in mediated and litigation cases to help manage overall emotional stress and assist the clients with their communication patterns and well being. I will work with you in a team approach to transition you from one life phase to the next.
- Child Specialist: A child specialist has specific training in child development and working with families going through a divorce or a custody related dispute. My goal as your child specialist will be to work with your child around his feelings and concerns. I will help you to guide your child through the divorce process and I will provide insight to the team around a co-parenting plan. I can meet with you to discuss how to talk with your child about your divorce which can be an extremely difficult conversation. I will advocate for your child around issues of custody and I will provide emotional support to him/her throughout the divorce process.
Collaborative divorce, like mediation, has many advantages. You would avoid expensive divorce litigation and the interdisciplinary model brings the focus back to your needs and goals as well as prioritizing your child's best interests. It is faster than litigation. Collaborative Practice has the potential for you to improve your communication and hopefully preserve a positive relationship with your partner.