Collaborative Law or Mediation

Mediation/Family Dispute Resolution

In mediation, the mediator (who is a neutral and impartial third party) the parties to reach their own agreement.  Usually mediators do not give legal advice but as I am a lawyer and an Accredited Family Law Specialist I give information about what the Family Law Act provides but don’t give advice that applies to your particular circumstances.  Instead, the participants in the mediation need to obtain independent legal advice both before and during the mediation process. If you are comfortable with not having a lawyer present then mediation will still work for you. Without lawyers being present the mediation process sees a reduction of costs because only one professional (the Mediator) is engaged by both parties.

Collaborative Law/Practice

Collaborative law or practice on the other hand allows both parties to have their lawyers present (there is no third neutral and independent party i.e. mediator) and the lawyers concentrate on helping the parties reach an agreement rather than proceed to litigation.  In fact the lawyers are prevented from going to court by virtue of the collaborative agreement that the parties and the lawyers sign. At the conclusion of the collaborative process the lawyers will create your agreement and/or consent orders, bringing an end to the matter without resort to litigation.

Both mediation and collaborative law concentrate on the free and voluntary exchange of information and a commitment to resolve the issues without resorting to litigation.  If you don’t feel either you or your ex-partner can make that commitment then mediation and collaborative law may not be suitable in your particular circumstances.

Ask yourself why you would want to have a court outcome?  Of course that might be necessary in some circumstances and our litigation lawyers at Family Lawyers & Mediation Services will provide you with the best possible outcomes.

This is general information only and is not legal advice. You should obtain specific legal advice regarding your specific circumstances. © Family Lawyers & Mediation Services. All rights reserved. Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation.