What is a High Conflict Divorce?
Studies show that in the United States, on average, 50% of all marriages will fail, and that out of those that fail, 20% – 30% will become high conflict divorces. The term high conflict has been around at least 20 years especially in regard to “high conflict families” in divorce. Our experience has shown that in high conflict families there is usually one high conflict member and the most effective way to help the family is learning how to appropriately deal with the high conflict member.
In high conflict cases the high conflict member’s behavior is not often immediately identified by lawyers and judges. This is usually because the high conflict personality can be persuasive and can make a strong appearance. Furthermore, the high conflict personality may retain an attorney who shares certain high conflict traits that will put the case in overdrive.
These types of cases become time consuming because of excessive involvement required by a judge. This is true despite the presence of parent coordinators because the nature of the law in regard to the use of parent coordinators allows too much room for parties to argue about issues such as competency and effectiveness. As a result, the high conflict case lands right back in the judge’s lap to tend to each and every emergency motion and motion for contempt being filed in rapid succession.
This way of handling a high conflict case is ineffective for the parties and the court. We have created a High Conflict Divorce Program to help parties, professionals and the courts change the way these cases go through the system to maximize chances of settlement and/or shifting the dynamic away from high conflict.
Our High Conflict Divorce Program focuses primarily on three objectives:
- Teaching the non high conflict personality important strategies to move himself/herself forward thus moving the case itself toward resolution;
- Beginning a parallel parenting relationship with structured boundaries it relates to the children;
- Providing a safe environment for the child(ren).