A Collaborative Family Coach will work closely with the parties, attorneys and other members of the professional team to thoughtfully create a highly structured, individualized process that will guide the spouses in optimal decision-making. The Coach will meet with both parties and assess their suitability for the Collaborative process; identify their unique goals, interests, and needs; communicate thoroughly with all members of the professional team; prepare parties to participate in meetings in a clear and respectful manner; and skillfully facilitate Collaborative joint meetings. Additionally, the Coach can work with parents to establish an effective co-parenting relationship and developmentally appropriate shared parenting plan that addresses the needs of minor children. In some cases, a child specialist may be utilized as an additional neutral professional to address specific child-related concerns.
Collaborative Family Coaches are licensed mental health professionals such as psychologists, social workers, counselors, or marriage and family therapists. Each Coach is experienced with issues of divorce and specifically trained in Collaborative divorce and the Collaborative process. Coaches do not offer legal advice or provide therapy. Coaches provide education, support, and facilitation of the Collaborative process. While many parties experience improved communication and a more positive outlook as a result of the Collaborative divorce, the Coach does not specifically address the problems in the marriage or place blame on any party. Each Collaborative Family Coach is a skilled neutral professional, trained to help the parties manage a wide variety of emotions, stressors and issues that arise during divorce.