There may come a time in a collaborative matter when a spouse becomes disillusioned with the process and decides that he wants to try litigation. This can happen when the process goes on longer than usual, and the clients feel like they’re not making any progress.
If you’re a lawyer, you probably tend to write more formal marital settlement agreements and parenting plans, especially if you’ve created templates for those documents. But other professionals may choose to draft more informal agreements that mimic the chatty way that people actually communicate. There are advantages and disadvantages to each style.
Your language should be clear; it should avoid confusion and contradiction. If your language is open to interpretation, you had better believe that one party will interpret it one way, and the other party another way. The result will be uncertainty, disagreement, and, ultimately, post-judgment litigation.
Negotiating and drafting a marital settlement agreement can be a difficult task. When discussing and crafting such an agreement, there are four big challenges. For most families, the hardest decision is how the parents will share the children’s time. While many courts are now encouraging 50/50 splits of overnights, many families would not choose such an arrangement, if left to their own devices.
In stressful times, it is normal to lean on your friends and family for help and advice. But what happens if their expectations for your divorce, the most stressful of times, are unreasonable?
One way to increase the number of collaborative cases you bring in is to network with other professionals. If you want to network with other collaborative professionals in your area, use the following email templates.
Assuming that you have a say in choosing any of your collaborative teammates, what considerations do you think should come into play? Do you consider only those professionals with whom you’ve worked in the past, those with whom you been successful?
I’m a counselor of law. But the longer I’m involved in collaborative practice, the more I find myself feeling more like a marriage counselor. While I’m no mental health counselor, and I always defer to those on our team with that training, my own professional experience has given me quite a bit of insight that I don’t mind sharing with my clients and friends when asked.
To create a collaborative law practice, start by acting collaboratively towards your staff. Treat them as you would any other collaborative professional, whether he is a young paralegal or another seasoned partner attorney. Be respectful and polite. Encourage good communication and creative problem solving. Reward good teamwork and collaborative brainstorming.
I hate to use the word “sell” when discussing the marketing of my professional services. It sounds so dirty, like I’m trying to put one over on someone. It always reminds me of the classic “used car salesman,” that guy generally portrayed by the media as a sleazy, greasy guy in a too-tight polyester suit who is trying to take you for a ride .