Collaborative Family Law is a family law dispute resolution process that allows all parties involved to work towards an amicable agreement that will be good not only for them but also for their children’s future well-being.
The Collaborative Process is Based on Three Essential Elements:
1) Open and full exchange of information.
2) A written agreement by both spouses and their lawyers not to resort to the court process; and
3) A commitment to mutual respect and focusing on each spouse’s goals and interests over taking an adversarial position toward the separation.
Collaborative Law encourages you to take control of the process and make informed decisions about what you want for yourself and your family; something which can be difficult when emotions are running high. You will be encouraged to keep an open mind and should only agree if you are fully satisfied with the outcome. The process is also designed to remain private, unlike the Court Process, where your private matters become public record.
Who is Involved in the Collaborative Process?
Lawyers who are trained in Collaborative Practice and subscribe to the Collaborative Process have a common intention to guide their clients through the separation process with a focus on settlement. As a result, the Collaborative Process almost always results in a more positive outcome for the families who use it.
Collaborative Family Law is also unique in that it encourages a “team” approach to dealing with separation. This is important because a separation results in more than just legal implications for a family. For example, the process can involve family and financial professionals providing their expertise to achieve solutions in a more efficient and effective manner than the traditional process of legal negotiation.
Financial neutrals can work with both spouses to ensure that each spouse has the financial information needed to participate in meaningful settlement discussions. In addition, financial neutrals provide the ability to test a variety of settlement scenarios on the future financial well-being of each spouse.
Spouses may also choose to work with family professionals in order to ensure that the needs of their particular family, including their children, are met when arriving at a parenting plan. Given the emotional consequences of the separation process, family professionals also aid in resolving the impasse that in many litigation cases, would result in significant cost and delay in resolving the issues.
We strive to represent our clients in such a way that promotes their wellness not only during the legal separation process but also beyond this limited period of time. We believe that the Collaborative Process allows our clients to approach their separations not just as an “end”, but also as a new beginning
How the Collaborative Process Works:
We are strong proponents of the Collaborative Family Law process. We have found that this non-adversarial approach to resolving family law issues results in our clients’ highest level of satisfaction. Clients who choose the Collaborative Process commit to resolving their matter outside of court, keeping all control in their hands.
Our role in the Collaborative Process is to represent your interests and provide you with the information and options you need to make decisions regarding the outcome of your case.
Clients who choose Collaborative Family Law retain the responsibility and control of reaching their own decisions by committing to:
- Create a clear, specific and detailed financial settlement that meets their needs.
- Agree on arrangements for children that promote their emotional, physical and spiritual health.
- Resolve parenting disputes through mediation or arbitration, not litigation.
- Communicate with each other respectfully and responsibly.
Collaborative Law allows you to make your own decisions about the resolution of your family law dispute, you will be provided with guidance from a trained collaborative lawyer throughout this process which is aimed at settling disputes promptly outside of court.
Collaborative family law can be a practical choice for couples who are struggling with the challenges of interpersonal conflict. If you have confidence in your spouse’s honesty, then this type of legal counsel may help create solutions that both parties will accept and sustainable peace within yourself as well.
As Collaborative Family Lawyers in Whitby our goal is to help each client consider all of the options available to resolve their family matter, giving them the power of choice throughout.