The collaborative process is a relatively new initiative and new way of resolving matters. It has been created to provide a client focussed method of resolving matters which involves the solicitors and the clients working in a cooperative way towards reaching a solution.
In essence it provides for a series of round table meetings where both parties and their respective solicitors all attend together for negotiations and discussions.
The idea is that in those meetings, rather than the solicitors representing their own client’s interest alone, all parties collaborate and find a way of reaching a settlement that is appropriate.
To achieve this, the parties sign up to a participation agreement in which both the parties and their solicitors agree not to issue court proceedings so that they can undertake unhindered negotiations with the flexibility to focus on the agenda that the parties are concerned with rather than on court timetables.
The agreement not to go to court is seen as a great motivation to ensure the parties are going to resolve the issues together. It is also appropriate in some cases for jointly instructed experts to come to the meetings such as accountants or financial advisors or indeed family coaches where appropriate.
Your solicitor is present for the meetings to provide advice and assist in focusing the discussion.
Our family law team includes three solicitors who are qualified collaborative lawyers and are able to offer this service. We will be happy to discuss with you whether this is an option that is appropriate for you.
It is important that your partner also sees a solicitor who is collaboratively trained and we can provide you with a list of those in the local area.
For more information about collaborative law please make an appointment and ask to see either Emma Hamilton Cole, Clare Cherry or Peter Watson-Lee all of whom are qualified collaborative lawyers.
We are pleased to offer this innovative way of working with couples who wish to have advice from one solicitor, in joint meetings.
Resolution Together enables couples to have joint advice sessions with one solicitor where this is safe and suitable. The advice is provided to enable the couple to find joint solutions whether that be in relation to financial or children/family arrangements with the benefit of family focussed legal advice. Other professionals including for example pensions or tax advisers can be brought into the joint meetings to deal with complex issues, with the aim of reaching arrangements decided together and then recorded at court (in the case of financial issues) by means of a joint consent order
The aim is that by providing joint advice to a couple whose aims are similar will cut down on the costs and timeframe involved in resolving outstanding issues.
The process begins with the couple having individual meetings with the solicitor and a consideration of how the process can best work for the family and what information is needed, before joint advice sessions are convened.