Collaborative Law

What is Collaborative Law?

Collaborative law is a way of resolving matters amicably where both parties hire attorneys who are trained in collaborative law and use a team approach. The professionals, who are members of the team, have taken a collaborative law training course in additional to their professional training in their field such as law, psychology and finance.

Some collaborative law professionals have taken mediation training to enhance their skills. The parties involved agree to not litigate with the attorneys they hire. In a family law matter, people on the team, in addition to two attorneys for each party, are a divorce coach and if needed, a financial professional.

Collaborative law meetings are held mostly on Zoom and occasionally in person.  It is a private and a practical way to come to a resolution. Collaborative law could be a much less expensive compared to lengthy litigation. In Massachusetts, one does need to go to court is to get a Separation Agreement in a divorce case approved by a Probate and Family Court judge.

Attorney Smith is a Director on the Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council, Inc. for a term which ends in March 2025.  She was the Chair or Co-Chair of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee of the Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council, Inc.  from 2019 to 2023.   She was Chair of the Charles River Practice Group of the Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council, Inc.  from January 2016 to September 2020.  She was a Co-Chair of the Charles River Practice Group  from January 2015 to December 2015 and the Co-Chair of the Metro West Practice Group of the Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council, Inc. from June 2011 to December 2014.

In June 2024, Attorney Smith will be speaking on a panel talking about “The Dream Team, Helping with Transition Using the Collaborative Law Process” at the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts 61st Annual Conference  in Boston, Massachusetts.

On May 13, 2022, Attorney Smith was on a panel Discussing Conflict, Culture and the Collaborative Process at the Roundtable for the Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council.

On May 14, 2021, Attorney Smith presented at the Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council, Inc.’s Roundtable training on “Using Social Media to Address Bias and Diversity in the Collaborative Community” with Attorney Joy Piper.

On January 22, 2014, Attorney Smith was the Chair of the seminar and spoke on “Collaborative Family Law” at Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, Inc. in Boston, Massachusetts . 

(c) Copyright 2024.  Debra L. Smith. All Rights Reserved.