WHAT IS COLLABORATIVE LAW
Collaborative Law has proven to be a highly successful method for a divorcing/separating couple to resolve their differences without going to court. In the collaborative law divorce/separation process, the participants each have experienced Collaborative Solicitors with specific training in non-adversarial conflict resolution techniques. Instead of going to court to argue over and litigate issues such as custody, access, maintenance and the division of assets, the participants and their Collaborative Solicitors enter into a series of informal, four-way settlement meetings. They jointly discuss the issues, share full disclosure of all relevant information and develop solutions that are more creative and acceptable to both parties than having a decision made by a judge in an adversarial hearing.
All Collaborative Law cases begin with each party and their Collaborative Solicitors. In cases where there are significant marital assets, young children or where the break up is particularly tumultuous, then, independent, neutral experts, who are also trained in the Collaborative model, are added to the process as team members. The expertise of these professionals in the areas of Mental Health, Finance, Children’s needs, Property and Asset Valuation may be employed to assist and advise upon specific areas of the decision-making and settlement process.
The Collaborative Divorce model views divorce as the restructuring of the family, not a battle to be won or lost. The model is successful because it provides the participants with an optimal setting, atmosphere and support system to enable them to settle their divorce issues. It empowers them to reach their own solutions to sometimes difficult divorce issues, thereby improving the chances for long-term goodwill and a sense of satisfaction that a fair and just resolution was reached when the divorce process is completed. The Collaborative Solicitors are not there to do battle with each other, but are charged with guiding the process for the divorcing couple, and collaborating on solutions.