We periodically feature our members (Fellows) to help you learn more about them, Collaborative divorce, and our organization.
Name: Tania K. Harvey
Profession: Family Lawyer, Collaborative Law
Title: Attorney and Family Law Firm Owner
Where do you practice Collaborative Divorce?
The Law Office of Tania K. Harvey, P.C. has two primary locations: Cook County and DuPage County. However, I have taken clients throughout the greater Northeast Region of Illinois.
What drew you to become a Collaborative Divorce Professional?
Throughout my years of experience as a Family Law Attorney, I have seen emotional and financial damages compounded through lengthy negotiation or litigation processes. Alternatively, I have seen smarter solutions created through Collaborative divorce that focuses on ensuring all parties can move forward and have a fulfilling future. Working together to craft an agreement ensures that all parties have the opportunity to voice their concerns and their goals, thus ensuring their needs are met and a mutually beneficial agreement is reached. The Collaborative divorce process is much more efficient and effective for most people pursuing a divorce.
How does the Collaborative Process address clients’ child-related?
A divorce can be difficult on children and as their parent you want to ensure they are protected. During the Collaborative process all parties meet with a child-specialist to get a better understanding of the family dynamics and the needs of the children. Together, you will all work to create a co-parenting plan that is in the best interest of everyone involved. In addition, you will discuss parameters for a healthy co-parenting relationship. In the end, the Collaborative law process protects the children and safeguards their futures.
What makes Collaborative Divorce a better choice than litigation?
There are three main factors that make Collaborative divorce a better choice than litigation.
Power: When you engage in the Collaborative process, you position yourself to have decision making power. You are able to express your concerns. You are able to articulate your goals. And you are able to formulate ideas and solutions to ensure your needs are met. When a case goes to court (is litigated), a judge has total decision making power. That means a stranger, who does not know you, your partner, or your family, makes decisions about your life that are final. Whether your needs are addressed, or not, you have to accept the judges decision, making litigation much riskier.
Money: At this juncture in your life, it is critical that you don’t spend all of your money on just getting the divorce. Because all parties involved are motivated to work together to meet goals, the process is more efficient and often, more cost effective.
Time: Litigation is typically the most lengthy path when it comes to divorce. That is because usually, all parties are only looking out for themselves, making it a much more contentious process. With Collaborative divorce the process may only take a few days because all issues are resolved in a series of meetings.
We have found that collaborative divorce is the most efficient and effective process to create smarter solutions that meet everyone’s needs and protect your family’s future.
Tell us something interesting about you.
My personal experience has affected the way I practice as a family law attorney. After 31 years of marriage, my parents got divorced and I saw firsthand what the process should and should not look like. Additionally, my husband has a son from a prior relationship, so we have a blended family and I know the long term impacts that an agreement can have on all parties involved. Both participated in litigation. My personal experience as a daughter, spouse, and a stepmom help me craft smarter solutions for my clients and their families through the Collaborative divorce process.