Each of MELCA’s founders have worked with couples going through divorce in each of their industries. Marguerite in family law, Tricia in financial planning, and Tina in psychology. And each of them, in their experience, found that the traditional court system more often than not did not work for their clients.
This is not to say that the court system doesn’t ever work, but that it treats every divorce the same way: a one dimensional divorce, seeing the whole issue through the lens of the law.
In reality, the courts were designed for extreme cases, not for the everyday person. They presume that most reasonable people can figure out their differences without the assistance of the law, and that it is the unreasonable people that the system is designed for. Which is why it doesn’t see shades of grey.
The court does not have the capacity, time, or funding, to really take in and work with each and every detail of every couple. It needs to try to apply formulas and precedent across the board in order to provide a fair service. But every couple is different and this formulaic approach doesn’t give the best result to every family.
This is where the court system fails and why so many people come through divorce worse for wear. This is one of the reasons why MELCA was founded. The other reason is that the founders knew that a mutli-disciplinary approach was the only way to help families survive and thrive after divorce and separation, because divorce is an emotional crisis with legal and financial consequences, not the other way around. The psychologists and financial planners have a greater role in divorce than has ever before been recognised, and in most cases their role far outweighs the role of “the law”.
Most people don’t know that there is an alternative to court when going through divorce. The court system can cause a divorce to become nasty because of its adversarial approach, when many couples could take a more peaceful route that leads to a better outcome.
Ideally, a majority of couples could have a collaborative divorce, leaving the court system for the cases that really need it. That way, the courts give the best to the extreme cases, while the other cases get their best outcomes as well.
The court system isn’t a failed system, it just isn’t the right system for everyone.