Welcome To Divorce Hotel -- Dutch Location That Quickly Ends Marriages Heads To America
Hotel offers divorces that can be settled after long-weekend stay
Divorce Hotel (the opposite of a quickie Las Vegas' wedding) is now on its way to America and we have the Dutch to thank.
The idea of a place where once-happy couples can hash out their final negotiations and make their split official was the brainchild of Jim Halfens, a 33-year-old Dutch entrepreneur (he also runs a concierge attorney business) that was intrigued with the idea after seeing a college friend suffer the perils of a divorce battle, according to The New York Times.
Currently, two U.S. production companies are in the running to base a reality series on the concept: Base Productions, and A.Smith & Company, as reported by The Daily Mail.
So what exactly goes down once you "check in" to one of the 20 locations? For one, you'll learn that the entire process can be settled in three days, something that will give sceptics some ammunition. The buildings are stocked with lawyers, mediators, psychologists and other professionals with the necessary skill set to handle most divorces (Remember, nobody is being hypnotized -- some "lavish" divorce settlements just can't be done over a long weekend.) Instead of dragging out the process, the important issues, like child visitation rights, alimony and splitting assets, are the focal points of the stay.
And, don't worry about any gory details -- Halfens already thought this through by arranging for each estranged pair to have separate rooms during their visit. Mediation talks are done in a suite, and hotel staff is specifically instructed to NOT wish you a nice or happy weekend.
According to Halfens, 16 of the 17 couples that tried out this renegade idea left their hotel with signed divorce papers.
The total bill when you leave the building amasses to a flat fee that can be anywhere from $3,500 to $10,000, depending on the financial arrangements of certain "couples". In comparison, divorces in the U.S. typically go for $5,000 to $20,000, and can be much more costly if it's a complex case, involving higher assets or child custody, according to Randall M. Kessler, chairman of the American Bar Association's family law section.
Expansion is the next step for the entrepreneur, as he plans to eventually work out deals to get into the U.K., Germany and Italy.
When it's eventually announced that an American T.V. deal was finalized, will celebrity pairings take the bait and end up being a part of the rumored-to-be reality show? Only time will tell.