Collaborative Practice

Collaborative practice is a dispute resolution model in which the couple each retain separately specially trained lawyers whose only role is to help them settle issues between them.

Collaborative law was designed to deal effectively with the problems faced by separating couples, maintaining an absolute commitment to the resolution of all issues as the sole agenda.

It allows those involved in family disputes to benefit from expert legal advice in the knowledge that all negotiations are dealt with outside the court system. The role of the lawyers is to work with their own clients to ensure that they remain reasonable at all times and that the process stays positive and productive.

For more information about collaborative practice please contact us on 01268 745568.

Collaborative law is not the right course of action for every individual but is worth considering if some or all of the following are true -:

  • You want a civilised respectful solution of the issues.
  • You value control and autonomous decision making.
  • You and your partner will be co-parenting children together and you want the best co-parenting relationship possible.
  • You want to protect your children from the harm associated with litigated dispute resolution between parents.
  • You and your partner have a circle of friends and extended family in common that you wish to remain connected to.
  • You recognise the restricted range of outcomes and “rough justice” often available in the court system and want a more creative and individual range of choices available to you.
  • You place as much or more value on the relationships that will exist in your re-structured family situation as you place on obtaining the maximum amount of money for yourself irrespective of cost, both emotional and financial.
  • You understand that conflict resolution with integrity involves achieving not only your own goals but finding a way to achieve the reasonable goals of the other person.

Collaborative Law works on the basis that each party will receive legal advice and guidance and will work with the other person and their lawyer to discuss and resolve issues through a series of face to face meetings. Everyone involved in the process signs an agreement disqualifying the Collaborative lawyers from representing either party at court. All participants agree to work together to find satisfactory solutions to the legitimate requirements and entitlements of the couple. The group will work together to ensure the best possible outcome for both parties is achieved at the end of the process.

It may become necessary to jointly instruct other professionals such as accountants, independent financial advisers or, valuers to assist with the process. The individual will represent both parties and will provide the group with the best possible advice on the issue raised. Once an agreement is achieved the collaborative lawyers will deal with the necessary formalities through the courts if instructed to do so, so that each party has clarity and certainty as to the terms of the agreement reached which will be binding for the future.

Should either party wish to approach the court on any issue during the course of the collaborative process that process will terminate forthwith and both lawyers will be disqualified from any further involvement in the case. This means that neither of the lawyers nor anyone else from their firms can act for you or your partner in any contested court based proceedings.

Only specially trained collaborative lawyers are entitled to work within this process.

For more information about Mediation and Collaborative practice please contact us.

Our Family Law team undertakes work in all aspects of relationship breakdown and is here to help and provide you with the highest quality of service.