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What is the Collaborative Law Process?

The Collaborative Law Process is a clearly-defined team approach that takes place in a confidential and private environment. The team consists of you and your spouse, each of your attorneys, a mental health neutral, and a financial neutral. The goals and interests of the individuals are explored and the couple decides what their family needs – not a judge

What is the difference between the Collaborative Law Process and the traditional litigation model?

In the traditional litigation model, the couple relies on the court system and the judge or judges to resolve their family disputes. Unfortunately, in this traditional litigation model, you often come to view each other as adversaries and the courthouse as the battle ground. Under this scenario, the conflict takes an immense toll on emotions, finances and the well-being of your family.   The Collaborative Law Process is a non-adversarial approach.  The focus is not on who is to blame, but on how to solve your family’s issues.  You and your spouse work together with your respective lawyers and the professional team to achieve a mutual settlement outside the courthouse. The Collaborative Law Process eases the emotional and financial strains of the family.

How does the Collaborative Law Process work?

Once you make a decision to use the Collaborative Law Process, make an appointment with a trained collaborative lawyer. Talk with your spouse about the process and direct them to the Brevard Collaborative Association website. Encourage them to call any of the professionals listed for more information on the Collaborative Law Process.
Once you and your spouse are both committed to using the Collaborative Law Process, and the attorneys have been engaged, the attorneys will select the Mental Health Neutral and the Financial Neutral based on their knowledge of each of their clients and the issues to be considered. Thereafter, your team will have a series of meetings, will exchange information, and will develop a clear understanding of your goals and expectations. Mutual problem-solving and option development will lead to a comprehensive written agreement.

What is a Collaborative Team?

The “Collaborative Team” includes each client, their trained Collaborative lawyers, a neutral mental health professional, and a neutral financial professional. Your “Collaborative Team” will guide and support you as problem-solvers, not as adversaries.

What is the difference between the Collaborative Law Process and Mediation?

Mediation is an alternative dispute resource often used within the litigation framework. While mediation can be very effective, it still employs the adversarial process and does not have the transparency of the collaborative process, nor does it use the team approach.