We understand that when tensions arise during family disputes it can be difficult to see how you and your ex-partner or co-parent can come to an agreement. Our lawyers will work with you to explore alternative dispute resolution options and narrow the issues in dispute, so what seemed impossible at the start becomes more achievable.
Working hard to come to an agreement is usually the best way forward for everyone, particularly where there are children involved, as it can reduce conflict moving forwards.
All of our lawyers are members of Resolution, a national group of family law professionals who are committed to the constructive resolution of disputes.
We, therefore, approach matters in a non-confrontational manner and try to work towards an agreed outcome rather than go straight to court. In some cases, this is of course either impractical or unavoidable but we are committed to achieving positive results for our clients in the most amicable and cost-effective way possible.
As a result, we will always explore alternative dispute resolution (ADR) with you to see if it is a viable option. Alternative methods of dispute resolution include the following:
As part of the collaborative law process, each party instructs their own solicitors who are collaboratively trained. The parties and their solicitors will then all work together to reach an agreement in respect of how the dispute should be resolved. To resolve the dispute, both parties will be present in meetings to discuss matters in an open manner.
During mediation, an independent third party will work with you and your partner to try to narrow the issues in dispute and come to an agreement which both sides are comfortable with. In most cases, it is now a requirement before you can make an application to the court and it is important that you seek advice about this process.
In an arbitration process, both parties will jointly appoint an arbitrator who will make a binding decision in respect of the dispute. As the arbitrator’s decision is final, they are much like a judge however the parties will have more say over the process involved and will set their own timetable by agreement.