Does collaborative family law require special training in British Columbia?
As I've mentioned, the legal issues are only one aspect of the challenges that arise when individuals are separating or divorcing. The collaborative process allows you the benefit of working with other trained professionals to support you in various ways.
These professionals can include financial specialist divorce coaches and child specialists that can all work together as a team for the benefit of all parties.
It's also important to know that Collaborative divorce lawyers must take extra training, well beyond what they learned in law school, to become a member of the BC Collaborative Roster Society, and the same is true for the Victoria Collaborative Family Law Group. This is because the goal of a collaborative family law case is that everyone works together to reach a mutually agreeable outcome for all involved.
There is no winning and losing in collaborative law, which means that the lawyers involved have to be dedicated to the specific process itself, and also skilled enough to be able to negotiate settlements that benefit everyone involved.
Lawyers have to take in-depth training to qualify as a collaborative divorce lawyer
In order to be a member of the collaborative law roster in British Columbia, lawyers must be:
A member in good standing of:
- The International Academy of Collaborative Professionals; and
- They must have liability insurance of a minimum amount of $1,000,000 either through their professional organization or third party coverage.
The membership requirements for collaborative divorce lawyers in British Columbia are as follows:
- Membership in good standing with the Law Society of British Columbia, with no practice restrictions related to the practice of family law;
- No less than 12 hours of basic Interdisciplinary Collaborative training. Those qualified trainings must meet the International Association of Collaborative Professionals Minimum Standards;
- No less than 30 hours of training in client-centered, facilitative conflict resolution (mediation training - interest-based, narrative or transformative mediation programs).
- No less than 14 hours of family violence screening training (identifying, assessing and managing family violence and power dynamics in relation to dispute resolution processes design). Qualified trainings are those provided by the Justice Insitutute of British Columbia’s Centre for Conflict Resolution, or Continuing Legal Education British Columbia, or any other training provider that is recognized as providing high quality training in this field.
- A minimum of 15 hours of training or education in the following specific areas: Interest-based negotiating training, Communication skills training, Family dynamics, The impact of separation and divorce on children and families, Further collaborative training, Advanced mediation skills, and Further interdisciplinary collaborative training.
6. Must have completed eight (8) collaborative files with signed participation agreements within the previous 5 years.
In order to qualify as a lawyer at Pathway Legal, all lawyers must be committed to obtaining the skills and qualifications necessary to become a collaborative divorce lawyer.
The above-noted training takes a significant investment for lawyers to complete.
It is the dispute resolution techniques that our lawyers have that are part of the Pathway Legal difference, and part of the Pathway Legal Promise to you.