Many parents agree to resolving out-of-court future impasses on vital decisions for their children. Parents in the collaborative process or mediation appreciate court fighting can be costly and drawn out. That’s true for initial proceedings and for future modification actions. Therefore, you may want to consider returning to the collaborative process or mediation to resolve future impasses.
Example Language for Collaborative Agreement
Might language like this work for your family?
Before seeking relief in court, the parties must attempt to resolve any disagreements, disputes, and conflicts pertaining to this Agreement by returning to the collaborative process or by attending mediation, as this Agreement provides. If the collaborative process or mediation is unsuccessful, either party will give the other party ten (10) days’ written notice of intent to file this Agreement with the Court for enforcement, modification, or contempt. The cost of post-judgment collaboration, mediation, or other dispute resolution shall be apportioned based on the parties’ pro rata share of net income.
Or, in a Parenting Plan, something like this:
DISPUTES OR CONFLICT RESOLUTION: We will attempt cooperatively to resolve any disputes which may arise over the terms of this Parenting Plan. We may wish to use mediation or other dispute resolution methods and assistance, such as Parenting Coordinators and Parenting Counselors, before filing a court action. Except for a dispute regarding enforcement of obligations under this Parenting Plan, for any dispute regarding the Parenting Plan that we have not resolved, after using out best efforts to resolve it, prior to filing any action, we shall return to the neutral collaborative facilitator (or, if the facilitator is no longer available, a mutually agreed upon successor collaborative facilitator) or to the full Collaborative team. Either of us may request in writing the other parent to participate in alternative dispute resolution of any unresolved dispute according to this Section.