chapter  4
28 Pages

What has the research revealed?

ByConnie Healy

This chapter provides an insight into the research undertaken on collaborative practice internationally. Macfarlane's research, undertaken between 2001 and 2004, was the first substantial study of collaborative law and was practice based. A case study approach was used, interviewing clients and lawyers at various stages of the process. Comparing the demographics of participants across the various studies, those opting to use collaborative practice are, on average, in the 40-59 age group and have been in marriages of at least ten years' duration. Macfarlane concluded that clients had more pragmatic reasons for choosing collaborative practice than did their lawyers. Macfarlane, in noting that participants frequently chose collaborative practice over mediation, questioned whether this was because collaborative lawyers were promoting their process over mediation. Macfarlane's view was that lawyers in the US and Canada appeared to have idealistic views of the Collaborative Family Law (CFL) process.