Frequently Asked Questions
What is Collaborative Law?
Collaborative law is a private system for decision making in which the partners - and attorneys for both partners - commit to finding a private solution which is in the best interests of all family members. No court appearances are necessary, but both partners have access to legal counsel throughout the process. All participants agree to exchange complete information pertaining to income, assets and debts. If "sticking points" are reached, the professionals make use of outside experts as neutrals to advise the family. These neutrals are financial advisers or appraisers, psychologists, and others. Drafting of final documents to be filed with the court is done with the participation of the couple, either in conference, "on-line" in electronic communications, or by other means.
The partners are free to end the collaborative process any time they choose and to conduct formal court proceedings against each other. However, in that event, the collaborative attorneys are required to withdraw from representation. This is because both partners need the assurance that their collaborative attorneys are truly looking out for their best interests, and are not secretly preparing for a costly court battle.