Collaborative law is an alternative process for couples separating or divorcing by agreeing to sort out their problems without a court battle and with minimum conflict. When working well, it has proven to reduce hostility and encourage constructive communication. It allows clients to listen to each other, identify issues as and when they arise and sort them out quicker by communicating directly, in a calm and respectful manner with the help and support of their chosen collaborative lawyers.
Each party needs to appoint their own collaboratively trained lawyer, and all discussions would take place over a series of ‘four way meetings’ face to face, normally in the comfort and safety of a formal office setting instead of conducting negotiations by letter or over the phone. There are normally a number of meetings. Each meeting is carefully planned in advance by the lawyers who identify the issues which need to be discussed. After each meeting, everyone involved receives a summary of the discussions which identifies the next steps which each person has to take before the next meeting.
This structure allows key immediate issues of concern such as arrangements for the children and transitional financial arrangements to be put in place quickly. Once matters are agreed, a legal agreement is signed and a divorce arranged if needed.
By working together, it is hoped couples are able to reach a positive outcome that best suits the needs of the whole family with minimum conflict.
At Scullion LAW we are delighted to have appointed Judith Higson, an Accredited Family Law Specialist, an Accredited Child Law Specialist, an Accredited Family Law Mediator, an experienced Collaborative Lawyer and a member of the Family Law Association. She is here to help you when you need her. We are members of Consensus Collaboration Scotland an organisation of Scottish lawyers, family consultants and financial specialists offer separating couples a non- confrontational way of agreeing the legal and practical arrangements for their separation and divorce.
We understand the collaborative process is not for everyone. It requires both parties to be open and honest, and to search for a fair solution for everybody. You also have to trust each other throughout.
At the start of the process you are all encouraged to sign an ‘agreement’ that commits you to trying to resolve the issues with respect and integrity without going to court and prevents both lawyers from representing either of you in court if the collaborative process breaks down at any stage. This means that everyone is absolutely committed to finding the best solutions by agreement, rather than through court proceedings.
To help you decide if Collaboration is the best choice for you, ask yourself the following questions as taken from the Consenus Collaboration Scotland Website-
If you can answer “Yes” to these questions, and you think that your spouse/partner will do the same, then you collaboration is probably the best choice for you.
Our experienced team of family lawyers have the skills and experience required to help people in your situation to find the best solution. At Scullion LAW we offer all our clients a bespoke, professional service. Your happiness is our priority throughout.
To speak to a member of our team, call us today on 0141 413 9406 or fill in our online enquiry form here.
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730 Dumbarton Road