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Collaborative Family Law Week (#CFLW) takes place from the 3rd to the 7th of October to raise awareness of the benefits of Collaborative Law for couples that are separating. Today, we focus on the importance of staying out of Court. Court proceedings can commence for a number of reasons following separation. Divorce proceedings can require the Court’s involvement if an agreement cannot be reached with regards to the financial consequences of a marriage breakdown. Court proceedings may also commence where arrangements cannot be agreed between separating parents as to where their children shall live and how much time the children shall spend with the parent that they do not live with. Unfortunately, it would seem from the latest statistics produced by CAFCASS (the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service) that Court cases involving children have increased by 23% since August 2015. Fortunately, Collaborative Law is an alternative to Court proceedings. If separating couples enter into the Collaborative Law process together they may be able to resolve matters in this way without the need to commence Court proceedings. Engaging in Collaborative Law instead of Court proceedings has the following benefits:- • A less daunting process • Time-effective • Amicable - to aid separating couples in maintaining a relationship after separation particularly, if they have children together. At Ramsdens we have a collaborative trained Lawyer, Helen Thewlis. If you would like further advice or if you are considering engaging in the Collaborative Law process, call our Family Law Helpline on 08000 147720, email family@ramsdens.co.uk or text LAW to 67777. We offer free 30 minute initial advice appointments from 7:45am to 7:00pm from Monday to Friday at any of our 12 offices across West Yorkshire. We will be posting another blog tomorrow on how Collaborative Law helps separating couples keep control....#CFLW