Posted on July 30, 2012 · Posted in Blog

Separation and Divorce Options

Time flies! It seems like it was just yesterday when you were saying, “I do.” That’s now changed to, “I don’t.” Well, don’t be too hard on yourself because you’re not the only one making the “Big D” decision. Almost half of all couples in North America are calling it quits these days.

If you ever find yourself at the cross-roads of divorce, you have four options. Each of them have their good and bad points, so weigh the pros and cons carefully and make an informed decision that is right for you.

Kitchen Table Divorce Separation Agreement Book

Kitchen table divorce is also referred to as “do-it-yourself” divorce, and where you and your spouse attempt to work it out yourselves. The best advice here is to be careful! Many mistakes have been made in the past by others, and people often have “buyer’s remorse” when they try to do it themselves. During separation and divorce, emotions run high while complex decisions are being made, and those decisions are often irreversible.

Collaborative Family Law

If you feel you need to use a lawyer, but you’re worried about the cost and stress, the collaborative process might be a good alternative for you. The Okanagan Collaborative Family Law Group would be a good place to start looking.

The primary goal of collaborative family law is to settle unresolved issues in a non-adversarial manner, ending with a written separation agreement. It originated in the United States in the early 1990s, and came to BC a few years later.

If you use this process, you and your spouse:

  • commit to each other that you will not to go to court
  • focus on the future, rather than the dire past
  • each hire a lawyer who has been trained in the collaborative family law process.
  • may also involve other professionals, who will help both of you to work through any issues you may have.

This process tends to:

  • reduce your stress
  • be much quicker than litigation
  • be less expensive than traditional litigation.

Traditional Method

Most of us have heard the horror stories of bad divorces. Some stories are true, others partially true, and still others outright fiction. The traditional method of separation and divorce is well known, and not much will be written here. This “old” method is the reason that family law in BC is changing in favour of mediation and keeping families out of court.


The fourth divorce option, mediation, has become the process of choice by an increasing number of couples. In fact, the new BC Family Law Act (2011,) encourages couples to use mediation over litigation.

Why is Mediation the very best choice? It can:

  • be much quicker
  • cost significantly less
  • reduce any conflict

It can also help you:

  • salvage any remaining relationship
  • control the separation and divorce process
  • keep your hard earned assets
  • carry out your private business behind closed doors, and
  • stay out of the court room and away from the eye of the media and public

When all issues have been resolved the couple is encouraged to each seek out a lawyer and get independent legal advice to finalize the agreement. This is similar to a business deal where the business people negotiate the terms and the lawyers “paper” the agreements.

Mediation offers the best chance for the most “dignified” way to get a divorce.


On the Doorstep of Divorce?
Give us a call at 250.707.0928, or request a consultation.

divorce mediation kelownaAbout Kelowna Divorce Mediation Services

We are family divorce mediators.  Our boutique divorce mediation firm has become Kelowna’s first choice when dealing with separation and divorce, and beyond. It is possible to reduce stress, time and conflict. Our mediation model educates and empowers our clients.

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