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Collaborative Law

The collaborative law movement was founded by a very sensible, very likeable lawyer from Minnesota USA called Stu Webb.

Stu was disheartened by some family law lawyers who seemed to be less interested in helping their clients resolve their family law matters and seemed to be more interested in making money. Stu began to feel as if he were part of the problem rather than part of the solution. This led him to consider retiring from the profession. Rather than retire, however, Stu returned to work on 1 January 1990 and declared himself a collaborative lawyer and set about finding other lawyers who might also feel the same way and might wish to join him.

Collaborative law seeks to align the interests of lawyers and clients by aiming to eliminate any interest a lawyer might have in involving the court or in delaying resolution of the matter or increasing costs.

The basis of collaborative law is a contract, signed by both parties and both lawyers, that requires that both lawyers to withdraw from the matter if either party involves the court (except for the purpose of filing a consent order – an agreed result).

Stu’s book, the Collaborative Way to Divorce can be obtained from for less than $20. The book is easy to follow and well worth reading.

Steven Lamont holds a certificate in Advanced Collaborative Practice from the University of Technology Sydney and strongly advocates the use of collaborative law principles.