A Better Way to Separate

Thinking about a better way to seperate

There is a movement afoot.

Many of the professionals involved in helping families through separation agreements are trying to help steer people away from long, drawn-out and costly court battles. There is talk of the concept of ‘separating together’. There is the supposed oxymoron of the ‘peacemaking lawyer.’ There is the idea of achieving something better out of a painful situation. Collectively, people are recognizing the value of lower conflict, common sense, cost-efficient separation and family conflict solutions.

One of the manifestations of this movement is the newly-created Family Dispute Resolution Institute of Ontario. This organization was founded to bring various professionals involved in supporting people through separation, including family or mental health professionals, financial specialists and business valuators, mediators, arbitrators, collaborative professionals, lawyers, counsellors and divorce coaches under one umbrella organization. The purpose of the organization is to help Ontarians find better ways to resolve the issues involved with separation, divorce and family disputes. These ways focus on out-of-court settlements.

Taken from an FDRIO letter to its members: “Along with being less adversarial and often less damaging to parents and their children, these other means of dispute resolution can address problems such as addictions, mental health, safety and family violence that traditional litigation processes often do not.”

Many municipalities across Ontario are proclaiming November 23 – 27 “FDR Week”, and are holding one or more public forums on November 24, 2015, open to the public and free of charge. Shortly, we will be releasing more information about an event being planned for Orillia. Also, check out our website for more information about out-of-court process options for finalizing a separation at www.GalbraithFamilyLaw.com.

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Toni Nieuwhof

Toni Nieuwhof provides legal services, advocacy and leadership through her current practice as a family lawyer and community volunteer in Barrie, Ontario. Her legal practice focuses on helping her clients achieve quality settlement results while keeping the interests of the children at the forefront. Toni is an active member of several associations, including Collaborative Practice Simcoe County and the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals.

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