The collabortive process is a troubleshooting and problem solving process. It is intended to remove disputes from the court so the parties are not at odds going forward. It can be used in any litigation setting, but is often used in family law.
In the divorce context, many couples wish to make agreements outside of court, but they may have differing views on how best to settle issues like child custody, support, and property division. However, they could settle their differences if they had: (1) all of the facts; (2) an understanding of the law; and (3) a structure to help facilitate a settlement based on (1) and (2). These couples may benefit from the collaborative process.
Melissa Sarris Kauttu is one of the few attorneys in North Florida who has been trained in the collaborative process. Unlike her job as a mediator, in Collaborative Law she serves as an attorney for one party and the opposing party often retains his or her attorney who is willing to collaborate. Any necessary helpers/facilitators, such as tax advisors, counselors, appraisers, etc., are added in as needed to help facilitate a workable resolution.