Tampa, Florida

Collaborative Divorce

Collaborative Divorce Lawyer in Tampa

What is it? In general, collaborative divorce costs less, is less stressful, takes less time, and gives you more options than the typical family law process. Collaborative law requires a change in thinking from the way most litigants look at family law. People who come to lawyers with family law problems are among the most emotionally charged clients in the legal system. The ones who once were the dearest objects of their affection have caused them pain and can no longer be trusted. The reaction of many people in that situation is to try to get even by causing whatever psychological, physical, or financial harm they can to the other person. Often they want their lawyers to assist them in inflicting harm in the legal arena.

What are the steps? When you decide to use the collaborative law process, you approach your differences in a new way. You each still have your own separate attorney to provide you with legal advice and guidance through the process. From that point, however, it becomes a different process.

The first step you take is to get together with your spouse and the attorney representing your spouse. You reach a signed agreement that you will work together to gather information and reach a resolution. Each lawyer demonstrates to the opposing party that the lawyer will do everything that can be done to reach a resolution by agreeing to withdraw from the case if an agreement cannot ultimately be reached.

You agree upon a schedule for gathering financial and other information. If necessary, you jointly retain financial, child development or other experts to assist both sides in determining the identity and value of assets, the standard of living and income capabilities of each party and the needs of the children. Whether experts are needed depends upon the complexity of the case.

If necessary, a mediator is jointly retained to help you work through any disagreements that arise during the process.

How is it different than having a trial in front of a judge? Judges make decisions on the parenting schedule for your children, division of all of your assets and awarding of child support and assets after only seeing you and hearing testimony over a few hours or a few days. The collaborative law process involves you and your spouse, who know far more than the judge will ever know about what is best for you and for your children, working together with your lawyers' assistance to reach the best possible agreement created to fit the unique circumstances of your family.

When the agreement is reached, it is reduced to writing and presented to the judge to be made into an order of the court.

In need of an experienced Tampa Collaborative Divorce Attorney?

Is there special training involved for the lawyers? We are proud to have in our firm an attorney who has undergone the training process to learn the most effective procedures for a successful collaborative law effort and has conducted numerous family law cases using this process. Stann Givens is one of the original twelve Tampa Bay area lawyers to be trained in collaborative law, is a charter member of the Collaborative Divorce Lawyers of Tampa Bay and is also a member of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals.

Contact a Tampa collaborative divorce lawyer at Givens Givens Sparks today.

Case Results

  • Family Law Case - Child Custody

    Givens Givens Sparks trial attorney, Kelly Candela, successfully litigated a family law case in which a child was nearly removed from her mother’s custody and given to the child’s alleged father, although the father had not yet established paternity. Candela filed a written response on behalf of her client (the mother) alleging fraud by the father and had the pick-up order set aside before custody was transferred to the father. The practical result was to allow the mother and child stay in their home state (not Florida) pending the resolution of the case. The Court agreed and granted Candela’s client custody.

  • Family Law Case - Child Custody

    Givens Givens Sparks trial attorney, Kelly Candela, successfully litigated a family law case in which her client filed a Petition to Establish Paternity, and the mother was served. After being served, the mother fled the state with the child. Candela filed an Emergency Motion for the immediate return of the child, and at that hearing, which was granted on an emergency basis, the mother was forced to turn the child over to the father, giving the father sole custody of the child pending the ultimate resolution of the case.

  • Family Law Case - Timesharing Violation

    Givens Givens Sparks trial attorney, Kelly Candela, successfully litigated a family law case in which her client was accused of violating a timesharing schedule agreed upon by both parental parties at the time the couple was divorced. The client’s child’s mother claimed that Candela’s client did not return the child for holiday timesharing at both Christmas and Easter. Candela had sent formal correspondence to the child’s mother regarding the dispute over the interpretation of the timesharing schedule, and when she did not agree, the father kept the child. The Court agreed with Candela’s interpretation of the timesharing schedule and found that her client was not in contempt for either holiday.

  • Family Law Case - Unilateral Medical-Related Decisions

    Givens Givens Sparks trial attorney, Kelly Candela, successfully litigated a family law case in which she filed a Motion for Contempt on behalf of her client against the mother of his child for making unilateral medical-related decisions for the minor child without his knowledge. The Court agreed that the mother was in violation of the final judgment of their dissolution of marriage and held her in indirect civil contempt. The Court also ordered that the treatment in question cease immediately and that the mother be solely responsible for any and all costs related to that treatment. Furthermore, the Court ordered that the mother was not to make any unilateral decisions in the future and was to notify the father of any future appointments so that he could be present either over the phone or in person.

Client Testimonials

  • "I feel exceptionally fortunate having been referred to you."

  • "Rob has proven his extraordinary talent, perseverance, vast knowledge of the law, along with his professional demeanor and his ability to communicate and listen well."

  • "Your expertise, knowledge and professionalism put me at ease while you handled my out of state matters."

  • "I will be forever grateful for your assistance, understanding & concern on my divorce."

  • "Know anyone with the same amount of class, ethics and thoughtfulness and ability to execute as you?"

  • "The times we have with our granddaughter are a constant reminder of Rob’s highly effective work."

  • "Going through a divorce is a very traumatic event, but you all make your clients feel cared for and the trust factor is definitely felt."

  • "I would recommend them 200% to anyone who has to go through a divorce."

  • "I truly appreciate your brilliant legal minds and your professional protection of my desires and interests as pertaining to my home."

  • "If I ever have a friend who's going through a divorce, you will be the only name for me to recommend."

  • "Mr. Givens assured me that he was placing my needs in very good hands. He was correct because we are in a much better place because of your efforts."

  • "Stann is an intellectually gifted, highly motivated, knowledgeable attorney. He was truly a 'master negotiator.'"

  • "Rob, Thank you for your assistance and guidance throughout my divorce process. I will certainly recommend you to others seeking legal support."

  • "I appreciate you both always taking the time to answer all of my questions"

  • "Your joint efforts and hard work have finally brought a son and father together."

  • "Your guidance and wisdom has truly guided me through this difficult process that I can now put behind me."

  • "His research, preparation and professionalism is noteworthy in every aspect."

  • "Rob, I wanted to say THANK YOU for all of the time, effort and hard work you put into my case! Without your assistance, Madison would not be here with us in South Florida."

  • "Your guidance and wisdom has truly guided me through this difficult process that I can now put behind me. "

  • "His research, preparation and professionalism is noteworthy in every aspect. You have a brilliant attorney on your team."

  • Paula, thank you so much! You have been a true pleasure to work with through this difficult process. I really appreciate it.

  • "Rob, Thanks again for all of your help through this process. You and Paula have both been great."

  • "Ellen, this comes with sincere gratitude for a job well done. You have restored my faith in your profession. Thank you for always acting in my best interest."

  • "Ellen, I could not have been more fortunate in my legal representation!"

  • "I am very happy that I selected your firm and would not hesitate to give my highest recommendation."

  • "Rob, I wanted to say thank you for all your efforts in getting this agreement settled."

  • You have been wonderfully amazing. Thank you for everything. So grateful.

Get In Touch

At Givens Givens Sparks, your family is our family. As such, we promise to fight for each client and voraciously protect their best interests. Facing a family law issue? Get in touch with us to learn how we can help!

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