Collaborative Law

‘A Way of resolving conflict that looks to the future’

Collaborative law is a process which offers separating couples an alternative to litigation. Instead of relying on the Court to determine what is fair, collaborative law offers the couple themselves the opportunity to agree what is right for their children and financially for themselves in collaboration with each other and their own solicitors in a series of four-way meetings.

It has long been recognised that litigation is a last resort because of the uncertain outcome, and the hostility that it can provoke.

In many cases it is this hostility that has the most damaging effect both on couples when trying to recover from their separation and look to the future, and on their children, who need their parents to have a working relationship in the future.

For some, it is possible to sort everything out around the kitchen table. For others who would feel vulnerable in mediation, yet would like to work towards a mutually acceptable agreement, collaborative law may be a viable alternative. It is an exciting and promising process that originated in America in 1982 and is fast taking English family law by storm. There are now approximately 750 Collaboratively trained lawyers working in England (as at May 2007) and the number is fast increasing.

If you and your partner enter into the collaborative law process you will be asked to sign a participation agreement setting out the principles you both agree to follow during the process. This includes agreement that you will:

  • Be mutually respectful of each other
  • Put your children’s interest first, and then the well being of each other
  • Not go to Court to resolve your differences
  • Try creatively and constructively to find a fair solution to all issues without Court intervention (although you may ask the Court to confirm agreed arrangements)
  • Be open and transparent in the information you give each other

If you and your partner can commit to this then Collaborative Law may well work for you.

For specialist advice please speak to: 

Mary McEvoy or Beth Woodward

 

Mary  McEvoy
Partner and Head of Divorce and Family Law
Luton
01582 725311
Beth Woodward
Partner
Milton Keynes
01908 304560
Joanne Norris
Solicitor
Luton
01582 725311
Pui Uro
Solicitor
Milton Keynes
01908 304560
John Walsh
Legal Executive
Luton
01582 725311