Previously called The Solicitors for Family Law Association, Resolution is an organisation of 6,500 Family lawyers and professionals committed to the constructive resolution of family disputes. All of the TSP solicitors in the Family and Divorce Law team, Marcus Price, Alison Cantor and Shelley Cumbers are resolution members. Two of the team, Marcus and Alison, have Specialist Resolution accreditations, and Shelley and Alison, are Resolution trained Collaborative Law Specialists.
Each year Resolution, supported by the Law Society and family mediation organisations, runs a national awareness-raising event to highlight the alternatives to court for separating couples. In November 2014, its third year, the event was focussed on finding ways of avoiding painful and costly court proceedings.
In North East Essex there are solicitors, mediators, arbitrators and financial advisors working together to help solve problems in a dignified and constructive way for families.
There are a number of different approaches:
Collaborative practice: Each party instructs a specially trained collaborative lawyer. The lawyers and parties meet round a table and commit not to go to court but to try to reach an agreement that suits the family. Negotiations are dealt with by way of face-to-face discussion rather than by correspondence between solicitors.
Mediation: Both parties see an independent and impartial trained mediator who helps them to reach agreement and then refer to solicitors to formalise it. Each party can take independent legal advice during the process as the mediator cannot advise both parties on the law.
Arbitration: The parties choose an independent arbitrator who will meet them and their solicitors and consider their case and then make a decision which will be legally binding. The parties can agree how the process is run to include the specific issues they wish the arbitrator to consider.
Each of these procedures concentrates on finding a settlement that suits both parties, their family and their particular needs.
The team advises clients on all aspects of private family law and each of the team members is able to offer a free half hour initial chat for prospective clients.