Collaborative divorce offers easier way to separate - WJBF-TV ABC 6 Augusta-Aiken

Collaborative divorce offers easier way to separate

Posted: Updated:
TAMPA, FL (WFLA) -

For many couples, divorce can be difficult, expensive and embarrassing. Your dirty laundry is recorded in a court file and open to the public. And it can drag on and on. And on.

But it doesn't have to be that way.

Tyler and Pamela Nelson were officially divorced Friday in Hillsborough County Court, and they were smiling about as much as they did on their wedding day eight years ago.

"It was so simple, and we weren't fighting," Pamela Nelson said. "We didn't want to sue each other."

Tyler and Pamela have been separated for the past four of their eight years of marriage. They didn't divorce because every time one of them tried to start the process, they got intimidated and didn't follow through.

"It's really scary," Pamela Nelson said.

The couple also couldn't afford to fork over big bucks to get a divorce. So they went to Bay Area Legal Services for help and were selected for a collaborative divorce. Their attorneys offered to work for free. The Nelson's divorce is the first pro bono collaborative divorce in the state of Florida.

Attorneys Joryn Jenkins and Adam Cordover said they wanted to give back to the community and get the message out that there is a better way to divorce.

Unlike in most contested divorces, which can get downright nasty, this couple didn't even see a judge until they were ready for the final step. The whole process took less than two months.

Tyler Nelson says they didn't want to make the process more difficult on their young daughter.

"It's mainly about your children," he said. "it's not about what you guys had, it's about the kids."

Another benefit of collaborative divorce: your personal information stays private. That's why celebrities are increasingly turning to this type of divorce, Jenkins said.

Judge Laural Lee, who granted the Nelson's divorce, said it was refreshing to see a divorce that ended almost as happily as it began.

"In any case when a family has to go through a divorce, we hope to see the least amount of conflict as possible," Lee said. "And certainly for some families, collaborative divorce can be an excellent way to do that."



  • 8 On Your SideMore>>

  • Reports: FBI probes JPMorgan hack

    Reports: FBI probes JPMorgan hack

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 9:19 PM EDT2014-08-28 01:19:51 GMT
    Reports: FBI probes JPMorgan hackReports: FBI probes JPMorgan hack
    The FBI is investigating a hacking attack on JPMorgan Chase and at least one other bank, according to reports citing unnamed sources familiar with the matter.
    The FBI is investigating a hacking attack on JPMorgan Chase and at least one other bank, according to reports citing unnamed sources familiar with the matter.
  • Bay area home security customers continue to complain they were mislead

    Bay area home security customers continue to complain they were mislead

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 6:54 PM EDT2014-08-27 22:54:28 GMT
    Bay area homeowners continue to complain of door-to-door salesman from Vision Security.
    Bay area homeowners continue to complain of door-to-door salesman from Vision Security.
  • Pinellas front desk school staff trained to handle medical needs at some schools

    Pinellas front desk school staff trained to handle medical needs at some schools

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 5:15 PM EDT2014-08-26 21:15:59 GMT
    Penny Perez, of St. Petersburg, worries every time she sends her 11-year-old son, Keith, to school. Keith has a rare condition called Williams Syndrome. He is developmentally delayed, and if his blood pressure is too high for an extended period of time, his heart could stop.
    Penny Perez, of St. Petersburg, worries every time she sends her 11-year-old son, Keith, to school. Keith has a rare condition called Williams Syndrome. He is developmentally delayed, and if his blood pressure is too high for an extended period of time, his heart could stop.
  • Sign up for WFLA News Channel 8 Email Alerts

    * denotes required fields






    Thank you for signing up! You will receive a confirmation email shortly.
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Dad acquitted in slaying of driver who killed sons

    Dad acquitted in slaying of driver who killed sons

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 4:05 PM EDT2014-08-27 20:05:37 GMT
    Barajas with sons (NBC)Barajas with sons (NBC)
    A jury on Wednesday acquitted a southeast Texas man of murder in the fatal shooting of a drunken driver who had just caused an accident that killed the man's two sons.
    A jury on Wednesday acquitted a southeast Texas man of murder in the fatal shooting of a drunken driver who had just caused an accident that killed the man's two sons.
  • Trial over drunken driver's murder splitting Texas town

    Trial over drunken driver's murder splitting Texas town

    Monday, August 25 2014 4:26 PM EDT2014-08-25 20:26:45 GMT
    The attorney for a Texas father accused of fatally shooting a drunken driver who caused an accident that killed his two sons argued with investigators Monday that none of the evidence they have presented at trial directly links his client to the murder.
    The attorney for a Texas father accused of fatally shooting a drunken driver who caused an accident that killed his two sons argued with investigators Monday that none of the evidence they have presented at trial directly links his client to the murder.
  • Tanker overturns on I-75, spills gas, closes lanes for hours

    Tanker overturns on I-75, spills gas, closes lanes for hours

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 8:15 PM EDT2014-08-28 00:15:59 GMT
    Northbound lanes on Interstate 75 between Bee Ridge Road and Fruitville Road closed Wednesday morning after an accident involving a tanker. Two lanes have re-opened as of 4:30 p.m.
    Northbound lanes on Interstate 75 between Bee Ridge Road and Fruitville Road closed Wednesday morning after an accident involving a tanker. Two lanes have re-opened as of 4:30 p.m.
Powered by WorldNow

1336 Augusta West Parkway
Augusta, GA 30909

Telephone: 706.722.6664
Email: talkback6@wjbf.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.