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International appointment for Scots lawyer

13 November 2008

Cath Karlin, who heads the family law team at HBJ Gateley Wareing, has been appointed to the board of directors of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals (IACP).

The IACP promotes collaborative practice globally as a means of resolving disputes, offering divorcing and separating couples the support, protection and guidance of lawyers without going to court. It has more than 3,000 members from 19 countries around the world.

Ms Karlin, an immediate past convener of the Scottish Collaborative Family Law Group, is the only Scottish lawyer, and one of only three Europeans on the 15-strong board.

Collaborative solutions are offered for marriage dissolution, child custody, co-parenting issues and division of assets, outwith the adversarial environment of the courtroom. They also help couples to understand how to better manage the effects of divorce on children.

Ms Karlin said: “With increasing divorce rates we need to move to a less adversarial system and encourage the legal profession to embed a more solution focused, child-friendly approach. I aim to use this new position to work with the Scottish Government and other relevant bodies to ensure that collaborative practice is normalised in Scotland, allowing lawyers to use it with increasing confidence.”

Approximately 13,000 couples divorce each year in Scotland, and taken with the fact that in 2007 half of all children born in Scotland were to unmarried parents, it can be estimated that as many as 50,000 children in Scotland will be affected each year by divorce or separation, and one in three children are likely to experience their parents’ separation before the age of 16.


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