Divorce hotel_The words "comfortable" and "divorce" are not typically used in the same sentence, but a hotel in the Netherlands is hoping to change that with what it calls the Divorce Hotel. The lavish hotel rooms come with lawyers and advertise the speed in which couples can have their marriages ended (how long does it take?). The hotel's owner wants to eventually bring his idea to the United States and has asked this actor and this actress to be his first American guests.The New York Times recently ran a story on “Divorce Hotels”. It’s not such a strange concept. Click here for the NY Times story. A divorcing coupe stays at the same hotel to ensure the process moves forward. No delays. Lawyers there focus on that case. Paying attention to a case often helps “get ‘er done”.Is this the wave of the future? Probably not. Is there a place for it? Maybe. The real bottom line is that once people are ready, emotionally and with all of the facts (an understanding of all finances/incomes/property values, etc.), divorcing parties should get together, be it for mediation or a settlement conference, or even a weekend at the “divorce hotel”, and they should not stop trying to reach resolution until it is done. The alternative, trial, is expensive, costly and very, very imperfect. Keeping hold of your own desitiny is vital. Mediation, and maybe even the “divorce hotel” offers an opportunity to do that.
Couples on romantic weekend getaways tend to make a spur-of-the-moment decision to get married. And it is for this reason that several hotels, especially in places like Vegas, provide wedding chapel services. If getting married could be that easy, then why the long-drawn out process for a divorce? Well apparently, not anymore. It is now possible to get divorced over a weekend getaway too, thanks to the Divorce Hotel.
The concept of Divorce Hotel was developed by entrepreneur Jim Halfens, in the Netherlands. In a country where the average divorce settlement could be very heavy on the pocket and take months to complete, Halfens spotted a great business opportunity that could make things easier for parting couples. So all they need to do is check in at the Divorce Hotel over a weekend and all the necessary legal documentation to end their marriage is arranged for them. The service includes a mediator and a series of lawyers who help the couple split assets, arrange visitation rights and agree on alimony payments, all at a fixed fee.So a couple that walks in married, can walk out two days later, completely divorced. Well, not all together completely. According to Dutch law, their agreement needs to be presented to a judge and the final approvals could take a couple of weeks to come through. Nevertheless, the concept certainly is great to be able to get decisions made and all the paperwork done in just two days. For now, Halfens uses high-end boutique hotels in various parts of the country, such as the Carlton Ambassador Hotel in The Hague. According to their sales manager, Ninke Bons, couples check in together, but they tend to stay in separate rooms. The staff do try to handle these customers with special care, keeping an eye on them to make sure they are okay. “We would normally enquire if a guest enjoyed their stay at the hotel. Well, obviously that’s not very appropriate in the case of the Divorce Hotel,” he says.
With a company called Divorce Hotel, one entrepreneur really is putting the word break into break-up.
While many couples may be looking for a romantic trip this February, Jim Halfens has created a concept offering couples quick divorces which can be agreed over the course of just two days.
Based in the Netherlands, the idea is to talk couples through alimony and splitting assets as well as visitation rights to any children, putting all the documentation together without drawing the process out over weeks and months.Mr Halfens uses high-end hotels around the country, putting up the couple in separate rooms (if they wish) and providing mediators and legal advice for a set fee.
Once the divorcing couple leave the hotel at the end of their stay, the only thing left to do is show the agreement to a judge, as required in Dutch law, which can take a couple of weeks.
The company assesses couples when they apply for the service, to make sure they are suitable for the process and not caught up in a bitter dispute.
It then ensures both parties' wellbeing during the stay.