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Jeff Wasserman, shareholder with Shapiro Blasi in Boca Raton. Jeffrey P. Wasserman, shareholder with Shapiro, Blasi, Wasserman & Hermann.

As a case looms, it has become instinctive for litigators to ready themselves for a fight. While litigation is not, by definition, combative, it certainly is by practice. But in divorce, the inclination to fight tooth and nail for every element where there is a disagreement has turned once-happy families, albeit recognizing the dissolution of their union, into a family feud. A collaborative divorce, while still difficult because it deals with ending a marriage, is a peacemaking process to keep civility between the parties so they can work more closely together after the process. First, however, the egos of the attorneys involved must be held in check—their natural desire to win at all costs must be replaced by the needs of the clients to resolve the issues as amicably as possible—and by doing so, preserve the often-fragile remnants of the family dynamic.

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