12 03, 2015

Happy birthday, collaborative law!

In October 2015, the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals (IACP) hosts its 16th Annual Networking and Educational Forum in Washington, D.C., celebrating 25 years of collaborative law since this practice was used the first time by Stuart Webb from Minnesota. Presenters and collaborative practitioners from the US and from all over the world will convene to share their latest thoughts and experiences with collaborative practice in family disputes. A similar event takes place already in April 2015 in Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia: The 5th Annual IACP Institute offers various workshops and presentations for lawyers and other professionals who would like to become familiar with method and applications of collaborative law.

12 06, 2014

IACP Network and Educational Forum 2014

The International Academy of Collaborative Professionals (IACP) hosts its 14th Network and Educational Forum from October 23 to 26, 2014, in Vancouver. This year’s forum headline is “The Art of Holding Hope – Using Collaborative Skills to Open Doors”. Collaborative lawyers can register online at the IACP homepage; there are special student rates and an early bird rate available until August 25, 2014.

8 05, 2014

On the potential of limited scope representation

A recent article by Kristen M. Blankley deals with the potential of limited scope representation. Against the background of the collaborative law procedure, Blankley explains the power of limiting the legal mandate of an attorney to counseling outside of courts. As Blankley points out, limiting the scope of legal representation could especially help clients who would otherwise be “unrepresentable” because their case is to small to yield satisfying returns for lawyers who are paid by contingency fees.
The case for collaborative law
Of course, the case for collaborative practice is much broader: collaborative law is not only for low income clients but particularly for those who have a deep interest in preserving their relationship by truly cooperative negotiations. Here, the so-called disqualification agreement, which limits the scope of attorney representation, builds a container around the parties and help them to avoid entering the spiral of mutual distrust ending in the ordinary destructive court battle (see Engel, Why Use Collaborative Law, on SSRN).

8 03, 2014

Droit collaboratif: Collaborative law en français

In France, collaborative practice has moved on quite quickly throughout the last couple of years. Most likely, the number of trained collaborative professionals in France has meanwhile outnumbered all the other European countries.
Several professional organizations
The first institutional organization of collaborative professionals in France was the Association Française des Praticiens du Droit Collaboratif. Founded in 2009, the association has meanwhile set up a comprehensive homepage including an instructive video on seven crucial questions of collaborative law (see the similar videos in English and German language). In 2011, another institution was founded: the Association des Professionnels Collaboratifs Interrégionale.
Convention de procédure participative
In early 2012, article 37 of statute No. 2010-1609 was enacted, inserting the new articles 2062 et seq. to the French Civil Code (code civil). On this legal basis, two parties to a conflict can now agree on a convention de procédure participative, which is basically a cooperation pledge combined with a temporary action waiver. It is valid as long as the other party complies with the mutual cooperation commitment. However, the disqualification agreement, which is widely held crucial for the functioning of collaborative practice in the US, is not part of the said convention; thus parties who would like to join a collaborative process have to explicitly agree to the lawyer disqualification.

5 03, 2014

EU Mediation Paradox?

A recent study commissioned by the European Parliament’s Committee on Legal Affairs observes reluctance towards mediation in almost all of the 28 EU Member States. The authors call the phenomenon the “EU Mediation Paradox”, as inspite of its numerous advantages mediation is still used only very rarely for the resolution of civil and commercial disputes.
13 01, 2014

4th Annual IACP Institute 2014 in Milano

The International Academy of Collaborative Professionals (IACP) hosts its 4th Annual Institute on March 27-30, 2014, in Milano. The conference is open to any lawyer, psychologist, coach, or other professional who is ready to be introduced to collaborative law and its application to various types of conflicts. Amongst the renowned speakers is Rita Pollak JD from Boston, one of the pioneers of collaborative law at the US East coast. The programme offers opportunities to explore cutting-edge ideas on collaborative practice as well as network with professionals from the US and all over Europe. Registration is open online at the pages of the IACP.

16 11, 2013

Alabama has enacted the Uniform Collaborative Law Act

In May 2013, the US state of Alabama was the 8th state to join the Uniform Collaborative Law Act (UCLA) in order to facilitate the use of collaborative practice in family disputes. The Act was introduced as HB 396 and is meant to provide a framework for parties and their collaborative lawyers which eases entering into the procedural agreements and ensures complete voluntariness of participation. After the Act, whatever any party says in the collaborative process cannot be used in court. Other US states are expected to follow Alabama in enacting similar laws.

8 08, 2013

14th Annual Networking and Educational Forum

The International Academy of Collaborative Professionals (IACP) hosts its 14th Annual Networking and Educational Forum on October 17-20 in San Antonio, Texas. The IACP is the largest international professional organization for collaborative lawyers. Its annual forum provides a chance to meet collaborative professionals from all over the worlds as well as to get in touch with cutting-edge topics from collaborative practice.

13 04, 2013

Survey on Online Consumer Arbitration

The Harvard Negotiation and Mediation Clinical Program invites individuals to participate in its current survey on online consumer arbitration. The project is of particular interest against the background of the European Union regulation and directive on online dispute resolution, which recently passed the European Parliament. The survey will take approximately ten minutes; it is accessible online.

2 04, 2013

Survey on the Impact of Divorce on Children

The Center for Psychology at Zurich University is currently carrying out a survey on the impact of marital dissolution on the well-being of children. The study aims at discovering drivers of detrimental consequences for kids due to separation and divorce proceedings for implementation in preventive and therapeutic settings. The (German language) survey is available online; data anonymity is assured.