Serving Westchester, Putnam, the Hudson Valley & New York City

Divorce does not have to be an economic and emotional battle. Divorce issues can be resolved with dignity, civility and privacy, on terms that are fair and that take into consideration the needs of the parties and their children.

Our Divorce & Family Law practice focuses on Collaborative Divorce, Collaborative Law, Mediation and Alternative Dispute Resolutions to assist clients in ending their marriage, obtaining a fair settlement and moving on with their lives, with the goals of respectful communication, co-parenting and a secure future for the parties and their family.

Mark Bass is a Westchester Divorce Lawyer who sees the need for an alternative to litigating sensitive family issues in court, where both the emotional and economic costs can be overwhelming.

Please review the Collaborative Divorce, Collaborative Law, and Mediation sections of our web site to learn more about your options and/or contact us to schedule an appointment.

Collaborative Divorce and Collaborative Law

The Collaborative Divorce Process is comprised of two different ways to collaboratively end the marriage. The first is Collaborative Divorce. Collaborative Divorce follows a team approach. Collaborative Law is similar to Collaborative Divorce, however, in Collaborative Law the parties only retain the services of their attorneys and do not have the benefit of the team approach.

The following is a description of Collaborative Divorce. In Collaborative Law item 5 would be excluded.

Collaborative Divorce is:

  1. An out of Court process.

  2. Each spouse has their own attorney whose objective is to help the parties settle their disputes. While the Lawyers advocate for their client, there is no threatening, deception or coercion.

  3. The Attorneys agree not to litigate. If the Clients cannot resolve the matter using the collaborative process and want to litigate, the Attorneys must withdraw and the clients will have to hire new attorneys to litigate. This requires the Attorneys and clients to have common goals in working toward resolving the issues and a dissolution of the marriage.

  4. Discovery proceedings are open. No one can hide relevant information. If information is hidden or concealed and the deception is discovered the process will break down. In addition, concealed information can lead to an agreement that will be subject to attack and may not be binding. For those fearing that assets may be hidden an asset search can be done. (The dilemma of a party hiding assets can exist whether you are using the collaborative process, mediation or litigation).

  5. The parties work with a team of professionals in addition to the Attorneys, which include a coach for each party (one of which may be the case coordinator), a neutral financial planner, and may include a child specialist. The types of professionals on the team may vary depending on the individual needs of the clients.
    The team approach takes into consideration the emotional and financial issues facing the individual spouses as well as issues which center on the children. This is done by making available specially trained professionals to address each spouses individual concerns and the concerns of the children. When these issues are not addressed in this manner the divorce process may be subject to greater conflict, delay, and increased legal expenses. Please see the links below for additional information.

  6. The Collaborative Process is designed to end the marriage:

    • With dignity
    • Within a reasonable time. Clients participate in setting the pace within which the case moves. You are not subject to the courts calendar.
    • With a workable framework for co-parenting.
    • With a workable framework for future life cycle events such as graduations, weddings, family gatherings, birthdays and religious events.
    • With understanding and respect.

  7. The Collaborative Process allows the divorcing couple to make the decisions about their family, finances and future at their own pace, rather than leaving those decisions to an overburdened court system and the adversarial process.

  8. The Collaborative Process works with the divorcing couple to end the marriage with civility on terms that are equitable and fair.

As set forth above the Collaborative Law model does not use the team approach, however individual specialists may be used in the Collaborative Law model if needed and agreed to by the parties.

What distinguishes the Collaborative Process from Litigation?

How does the Collaborative Process work?

The Benefits of the Collaborative Process

Frequently Asked Questions


The contents of this website are for general informational purposes only, regarding legal issues in New York and are not intended to convey legal advice. The reader should not attempt to solve individual problems based upon the general information contained on this web site.  The use of this web site does not establish any attorney client relationship.
The law offices of Bass & Abrams, P.C.  are licensed to practice law in the State of New York. Readers should not act upon the information contained in this site or the linked sites without first seeking the advice of an attorney licensed to practice in your area. For more information please click on the disclaimer link below.


Serving: Westchester, Putnam, the Hudson Valley & New York City.