When you litigate a case (sue the other party by going to court), the judge will not take your word on every matter. You will need to hire experts to prove certain claims you make in your case, or to disprove claims your spouse makes. When experts are hired by one party, the other party must hire its own expert to refute the other’s claims. As you can imagine, expenses escalate very quickly. Maybe your wife owns her own commission based business and her income varies from year to year. Perhaps your husband has been unemployed for several months after working at a high paying job. What income should be used for determining support? If you go to court, the court will want to hear from an expert as to what income should be used. So each party hires its own expert to justify his or her position, which is very expensive. Sometimes the court requires an expert get involved; for example, when the court orders a child custody evaluation. If the evaluation does not support your desire for a particular custody or parenting plan then you must hire your own expert to refute that evaluation. Again, very expensive. How does this differ with the collaborative law model? Well, using the example above, you may still need an expert to determine the appropriate income amount. When an expert is brought in to the collaborative process, that expert is retained by both parties and serves as a neutral, objective contributor to the process. The collaboratively trained expert provides the insight and advice that is needed to educate the parties and the attorneys on the issue at hand so they can move forward in an informed manner. The expert’s position is more tenable because he or she has worked with both parties cooperatively. It is more efficient and very cost effective.
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Wilson Family Law LLC
667 Shunpike Road, Suite 5
Chatham, NJ 07928
Office: 973-520-4275 Fax: 973-378-0603