Represented Counties:San Mateo, Santa Clara, San Francisco
About the Group:
Collaborative Practice of San Mateo County was initially formed in 1996 under the name of Peninsula Collaborative Family Law Group. At the outset, the group consisted only of a few family law attorneys. Our practice association has expanded considerably from its rudimentary beginnings. Today, the group consists of approximately 25 attorneys, 10 mental health professionals, and 5 accounting and other financial professionals. The association’s name was changed in 2005 to recognize the expansion of collaborative practice beyond family law, the inclusion of professionals other than attorneys, and to emphasize the location of the group as being sited in San Mateo County. All of our members are also members of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals, the internationally recognized leader in collaboration.
CPSMC has presented trainings about collaboration to our members and to other professionals from around the state. We meet every other month to discuss and resolve group management issues; we meet in the intervening months to discuss individual case successes and difficulties and to assist each other in refining our individual skills. In addition to family law cases, individual members are beginning to apply their collaborative skills to cases to business and probate matters.
The local court has endorsed the expansion of Collaborative Practice to a great extent. In fact, family law litigants must routinely file a pleading that requires them to acknowledge the availability of Collaboration in their county. Many of our members no longer pursue litigation cases in the family law area, preferring to limit their practices to ADR, particularly collaboration.