By Laura Wasser
Family law attorney Laura Wasser, known for representing celebrity clients in Southern California during their divorces and similar legal matters in the spotlight, endorsed Collaborative Divorce during her keynote lunch presentation at Collaborative Practice California (CP Cal) Conference 10 in Los Angeles.
Wasser is a steadfast advocate for private, respectful divorce proceedings whenever possible, and she says Collaborative Divorce makes this possible. Wasser said any revolution must begin with responsible professionals, problem solvers ready to face the challenge of changing the way both professionals and their clients approach resolution.
First and foremost, Wasser says, we need to tell clients, “Don’t let someone in a black robe who doesn’t know you and your family make decisions for you,” and instead urge them to take control of their situation. “Involving clients in the process needs to happen. They have to talk to resolve issues,” said Wasser.
Wasser said many family law attorneys avoid Collaborative Practice and other forms of Consensual Dispute Resolution for one reason: it’s not easy. “Settling is sometimes much tougher than litigating,” Wasser admitted, which prevents more attorneys from being strong advocates for trying to work through issues outside the court system.
Wasser said the effort to educate more people begins on many levels, and will require the help of many partners. “It takes the law schools, bar associations, courts, and social media to educate about Collaborative Practice,” said Wasser. In particular, Wasser believes the education should start with the next generation of professionals. “Start talking to young attorneys about Collaborative Practice. This is how it needs to be done,” said Wasser.
Wasser’s book, “It Doesn’t Have to Be That Way: How to Divorce Without Destroying Your Family or Bankrupting Yourself,” urges couples to embrace healthier ways to divorce, including Collaborative Divorce. She says her book is a guide to divorce “for a new generation” of people who want to keep themselves and their children healthy and protected through the process.
Following her appearance at the Conference, Laura Wasser completed the three-day Collaborative Divorce training provided through the Los Angeles Collaborative Family Law Association (LACFLA) at Loyola Law School. Her clients are now benefitting from the Collaborative approach now added to her expertise on family law matters.
CP Cal sincerely thanks attorney Laura Wasser for lending her visibility to support Collaborative Practice.