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Caroline Ryan

Posted 24 June 2016
by Caroline Ryan

Article on Collaborative Law


Collaborative law is an alternative way to the traditional Court process which can be used to resolve financial and children issues upon divorce.

The best solutions are often those that are worked out by the parties themselves. The collaborative law process involves both parties sitting down with their solicitors to work things out face to face. The meetings are conducted at a round-table meeting.

When considering whether the process is for you, you should consider the following:-

  1. Do you both have a genuine desire to reach an agreement that is fair to the whole family?
  1. Do you both have a willingness to disclose, fully and honestly, information of all assets?
  1. Do you both have a commitment to trying to reach a solution without going to Court?

If so you will each need to instruct your own collaboratively trained lawyer.

The collaborative process gives back control to the parties. The parties set the agenda, rather than the Court setting a timetable. Sometimes only a couple of meetings are required, again the parties will dictate the frequency and number of meetings.

By meeting with your lawyers both parties retain the best chance of understanding each other and finding the right solutions. Most importantly the decisions are those of the parties rather than a Judge.

Other independent impartial advisors can be brought into the process if required such as a financial advisor or Accountant.

At the outset the parties will sign an agreement which means that the collaborative lawyers will be disqualified from representing them in Court if the collaborative process breaks down. That means that everyone is absolutely committed to helping the parties find the best solution by agreement, rather than through conflict. Once an agreement is reached your lawyers will put it into effect, obtaining a Court order where needed.



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About the author

Caroline Ryan

Caroline Ryan

Consultant Solicitor

Consultant in the Exeter family team with particular expertise in finances on divorce