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Collaborative Law: There Are Alternatives to Fighting

 Posted on November 12, 2015 in Family Law

Texas collaborative attorney, Texas high asset attorney, Texas complex litigation lawyer,A growing number of high-asset divorce cases are resolved through the still-controversial method of collaborative law, during which the parties work together to find mutual solutions to problems stemming from child custody, spousal support, property division, and other complex property litigation issues.

The method is controversial because it totally eschews the traditional adversarial model. Assume that, instead of playing a football game in Waco or Austin, officials from The University of Texas and Baylor met to compare their teams' statistical profiles and then enlisted the help of sportswriters and broadcasters to determine a winner. Collaborative law is not nearly that radical, but it is in the same general neighborhood.

Critics maintain that attorneys can only "zealously" represent their clients, as called for in the canon of ethics, in a courtroom shootout. However, good lawyers are very adept at far more than simply making arguments.

How It Works

Most high net worth divorces begin with a petition and temporary restraining order. A collaborative law matter begins with a petition and notice of collaborative law proceeding. Then, the parties meet about once a month to discuss the issues in the case and negotiate solutions. If necessary, outside professionals like accountants and psychologists may be called upon to lend their expertise; the parties general split the cost.

Between meetings, the parties have "homework," such as collecting documents and talking to witnesses. These are activities that the lawyers perform in a litigated divorce.

Although there is no rule of thumb as to length, many cases are resolved in as little as five or six meetings. If the parties are unable to reach a settlement, which is extremely rare, they must start the process over with new attorneys. This provision helps ensure that everyone is committed to the process as a litigation alternative, and not simply a litigation supplement.


The streamlined process and less work often means lower legal bills, which is good news for everyone. In addition, many studies suggest that there is a much higher compliance rate for agreements between the parties as opposed to orders from a judge, so there are fewer trips to the courtroom in the long term.

Truth be told, most all good parents are willing to make sacrifices if it makes their children's lives better. And that is the purpose of collaborative law: to preserve dignity in the process by making common-sense sacrifices for the greater good.

Only a handful of aggressive Cedar Park divorce attorneys are both board certified experts and certified collaborative law practitioners. Call us today for a confidential consultation.



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