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Non-lawyers to enable dispute resolution

A growing trend of resolving family law and civil disputes without going to court will result in the launch of Collaborative Professionals Victoria this Thursday.Lawyers, psychologists and…

A growing trend of resolving family law and civil disputes without going to court will result in the launch of Collaborative Professionals Victoria this Thursday.

Lawyers, psychologists and financial advisers will meet this week in support of collaborative practice and the recently established Collaborative Practice Section of the Law Institute of Victoria (LIV).

Describing this emergent method of dispute resolution, facilitator of the new collaborative practice, Tony Cinque, said in a statement: "Collaborative practice is an innovative and effective way to resolve issues which focuses on empowering individuals to find their own solutions.

"The process focuses on facilitating outcomes which promote identified interests and goals. The process uses a team approach involving clients, their lawyers and other professionals including psychologists and financial advisers," he said,

Cinque also noted that although collaborative practice was primarily associated with family law it is well suited to the areas of estate claims, commercial disputes and other civil matters.

According to Cinque, it works particularly well for couples going through a separation process because of the focus on the welfare of children and observing and promoting a co-parenting relationship after separation.

"The core purpose of this process is to achieve resolution by collaboration and consensus to avoid or at least minimise conflict as much as possible. Lawyers and other professionals work with clients collaboratively to find mutually acceptable and workable solutions," Cinque said.

"People who want to work constructively with lawyers and other professionals to resolve issues without going to court should consider using a Collaborative Professionals Victoria member to assist."

The LIV has trained over 100 lawyers and other professionals in collaborative practice over the past few years and has the largest number of collaborative practitioners in Australia.

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