Monday, June 12, 2006

A kinder, gentler divorce???

Pardon my legal rambling, but I spent two days last week, Thursday and Friday, learning a “new” way to practice matrimonial law – “Collaborative Practice.” Basically, both parties and their attorneys commit to working out the details without going to Court, and to using “divorce coaches” (I hate that term -- makes me think of high school gym teachers with whistles) from the mental health and financial fields to ease the process. If it all breaks down, then neither party can use any information obtained from negotiations in litigation, and they have to get different attorneys.

Sounds great, right? I’m skeptical. I’ve being doing this type of law for 20+ years, and though I personally hate getting down and dirty, and truly loathe those attorneys who have to litigate every pot and pan, I wonder how much of the collaborative process is practicing law, as opposed to emotional counseling. Don’t get me wrong – I’m anxious to try it and see if it works well enough to give up litigation forever, but I wonder how the clients will react. It seems that there’s a “War of the Roses” mentality in most people who walk through my door – they want to “get” the other spouse, no matter what. Usually, if enough time goes by, the desire for revenge lessens, helped out by my continuing spiel about litigation just creates more problems, especially if children are involved, and who wants major life decisions to be made by a person in a black robe that doesn’t know you at all. Plus, the dollars and cents.

It's worth a try. Just this morning my own client accused me of being a racist (I am the 4th attorney who has been assigned to represent him in a neglect proceeding), and tool of the Department of Social Services. We’re in the middle of trial, and the Judge wouldn’t let me out of the case. No wonder I’m …..

Fixated on Fixation! Here’s the beginning of an anklet, and I love the feel of the socks. Very cushy. And – I bought those little “sweater” point protectors and use them to make sure I don’t lose stitches when I tuck these babies in my briefcase or purse. Cool!

And finally – birthday socks for my oldest friend, Denise aka Blanche. They’re a surprise, but I don’t think she’ll catch this post, so it’s safe to show them before I mail them off. Don’t they look like Starburst candies?

HAPPY BIRTHDAY BLANCHE! (there are rats …)

PS One of the reasons I’m ranting and raving is this:

The building next door is getting a new roof. There are saws, shingles dropping, motors whirring. I can’t wait for the stinky tar smell to waft in through the window. Arghhhh!

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