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 Family Divorce and Separation

Decades ago, couples in trouble got one word of advice from most sources: ride it out. As a result, many families stayed together when it was better off for everyone to live apart.  Family divorce and separation was something that never happened. As recently as 25 years couples seeking divorce often had few options other than legal separation or hiring lawyers and having a costly settlement or an even more costly court battle. Even if a court case seems unavoidable or inevitable, Child Custody Evaluations can often settle a dispute and are less costly than litigation. Couples who bring to court fights over items such as furniture, appliances or collectibles can risk the displeasure of both attorneys and judges (see Personal Property Division below)

Today things have progressed. Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) processes abound. Mediation, Arbitration and Social and Financial Early Neutral Evaluation (SENE or sometimes CPENE and FENE) are just a few of the new processes that have sprung up in Minnesota and nationally in recent years. See the link for MN Statutes Rule 114 relating to ADR https://www.revisor.mn.gov/court_rules/rule.php?type=gp&id=114 .These ADR processes can save 50-75% or more over a traditional courtroom based divorce.  Divorce Mediation, also called Family Mediation or Custody Mediation, is the most popular of these processes. Glen  bickford does divorce mediation quite often.

After a divorce, there are still more ways for divorced parents in conflict to avoid court. Mediation works before or after divorce. Parenting Time Expeditors can mediate a dispute or even interpret the divorce decree or court order. Parenting Consultants can decide new matters of conflict that come up over time. All these developments have meant that divorce and divorced parenting issues, while often painful, can be managed in a way that is best for all concerned, especially the children. Family and Divorce is never easy, but it can be managed with Glen to help.

Brand new in Minnesota is discernment therapy started by the Doherty Relationship Insititute dohertyrelationshipinstitute.com. Discernment therapy is specifically for people who are stuck not knowing whether to divorce or not. Up to six sessions (each person agrees to the next session each time) help you “get off the fence.” Three practitioners of discernment therapy I would recommend are Kristine Erickson, healinghopemn.com, (also specializing in therapy with a religious perspective), and Annie Schwain,  vodacounseling.com, (also a specialist in addictions who worked at Hazelden, hazelden.org).

Also new but more established in Florida, Texas and California is the field of Elder Mediation which deals with the conflict which can arise in end-of-life issues. Issues such as downsizing, moving, nursing homes and assisted living as well as ravaging illnesses, hospitalization and care dilemmas and even will distribution can be handled by Bickford Mediation. Glen Bickford has long experience from many perspectives working with families and the elderly in hospitals, nursing homes and churches and in his own family.