Streeterlaw offers Collaborative Law process to clients30-March-2016 Family Law By Simone Green
Streeterlaw is pleased to announce an exciting new development within the Family Law team. In keeping with our firm’s motto of “excellence with integrity” and our focus on the needs of the client, we can now offer our clients the option to settle their matter through the Collaborative Law process. This allows our clients to maintain their dignity without the expense and delays of the Family Courts.
Collaborative law is a method of Alternative Dispute Resolution and involves a commitment by each of the parties to avoid Court by engaging in a series of joint meetings with collaboratively trained coaches, lawyers, accountants, financial planners, psychologists and/or family therapists (as the case requires), with a holistic focus on the needs of the parties and reaching a settlement that both parties can accept. While each of the parties has their own collaboratively trained lawyer, the team of professionals all work together to find solutions which work best for the family for both financial and child-related issues.
One of the many benefits of collaborative practice is that it reduces much of the correspondence normally generated between lawyers; and therefore time and expense, as most of the communication is done in the presence of both parties, ensuring issues can be addressed in real time, with the assistance and cooperation of other professionals (with relevant expertise) to maximise the chances of settlement.
Chances of success are also maximised in this process when all professionals commit to resolving the matter outside the Court system. Each of the parties and the collaborative professionals sign an agreement not to take the matter to Court.
Collaborative practice has been around for a number of years and is gaining popularity. Research suggests that it is generally successful in the majority of cases.
Collaborative practice could be suitable if:
- The matter is not currently before the Court;
- The parties want a dignified, non-aggressive approach to resolving the issues in dispute;
- There are children of the relationship and the parties wish to focus on their specific needs;
- The parties wish to retain control over decisions affecting their future;
- The parties do not wish to incur the costs and delays of going to Court;
- The parties wish to engage in an honest and open discussion of the issues and seek a resolution.