Mediation and Collaborative Law
Many lawyers currently advertise their services as mediators. The sales pitch made to couples going through a divorce or separation is that by mediating you not only avoid the stress of litigating, you can save on legal fees. However, in practice mediation can produce neither. Mediators may charge as much as, if not more than, most lawyers. Further, each spouse will still need to hire their own lawyer to give independent legal advice prior to signing the mediated agreement for it to be enforceable.
Most divorces in fact do not end up in trial. Many are resolved early on when spouses consider settlement options. If the parties want an amicable resolution, their lawyers will make it happen. Further, parties litigating a divorce (with the services of a lawyer) are free to hire a third party mediator (for a fee), or use judicial dispute resolution processes at no cost.
Another trend is that of collaborative family law. Lawyers who are certified as collaborative lawyers try to engage in discussion without litigation, again, in hopes it will be a less adversarial and less expensive process. Again, the benefits of collaborative law may be illusory. Also, be aware the collaborative approach has the disadvantage that if parties do not settle with the collaborative lawyers, both lawyers will withdraw and the money spent on them will be gone, leaving the parties back at square one.
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Facing a divorce or criminal charge is a life-changing event. To secure the best possible outcome, you need the best possible representation. We assist clients with divorce and family law matters, DUI/Over 80/Impaired Driving and other criminal cases.
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