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Collaborative Family Practice

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Dot Dobbins and Irwin Kuhn were among the first collaboratively trained family law attorneys in Tennessee.

Collaborative practice is a voluntary process in which the parties and counsel contract to follow certain protocols when negotiating settlement of a dispute. At the heart of the process is the agreement that collaborative attorneys will be hired pursuant to a limited scope representation agreement. Attorneys will work with clients to help them reach settlement. If settlement cannot be reached, and the clients pursue more traditional litigation in court to resolve their differences, the collaborative attorneys will withdraw from representation. In addition to putting a premium on settlement for clients, there is no financial incentive for attorneys to resort to litigation. For attorneys, success is achieved when clients reach a durable, win-win settlement agreement. Because of the withdrawal provision of the collaborative agreement and its confidentiality provisions, parties are free to have the type of candid discussions that would not take place when opposing counsel might later be cross-examining them in court.

The collaborative approach may not be for every couple, but Irwin and Dot have successfully worked with numerous clients to unwind their marriages in an efficient business like manner with lower levels of acrimony.

Latest Articles

  • Big Dollar Divorce In Big D

    A very wealthy Dallas couple decided on the collaborative approach to divorce after they spent $7.4 million in litigation. The litigation attorney called it a marathon case. The collaborative attorney suggested it should have been a 5K. Here is the story from D Magazine September 2012.
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  • Collaborative Divorce: A Case Study

    Irwin Kuhn and Marlene Moses wrote this article outlining the steps of a hypothetical collaborative divorce. It was originally published in the Nashville Bar Journal. Download Article
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  • Family Business and Divorce

    Kevin Fuller, a top Texas divorce lawyer, discusses why collaborative divorce makes sense for people trying to preserve family businesses. Among the reasons: Negotiations are conducted in a private arena. Legal fees are used more efficiently. Settlement discussions can be scheduled to fit business needs rather than the court’s calendar. The collaborative process is less…
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  • Frist Collaborative Divorce: Irwin Kuhn’s Tennessean Comment

    Irwin Kuhn recently authored an article in the Nashville Tennessean concerning the divorce of former Senator Bill Frist and his wife Karyn. The Frist chose the collaborative divorce approach. Irwin Kuhn is a collaborative divorce lawyer in Nashville and commented on that choice. Frists Work to Make Divorce Less Painful  Sep 18, 2012 Nashville Tennessean Irwin J. Kuhn Former…
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  • Nashville Bar Journal Article on Collaborative Divorce

    (Originally published by The Nashville Bar Journal, December 2011-January 2012) The stage for a workable post marriage relationship between two people whose lives will always connected through children or family or friends is not set well by a divorce complaint dramatically setting out the gory details of one party’s “inappropriate marital conduct” followed by interrogatories…
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  • Collaborative Family Law: Minimizing the Negative Affect of Divorce on Children

     Irwin Kuhn and Dot Dobbins practice collaborative divorce and family law in Nashville to help minimize the negative affect of divorce on children. This article in the Wall Street Journal, The Child-Focused Divorce, notes that the intensity of a divoce can not only affect grades and behavior when children are young but also their relationships when…
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  • Collaborative Family Law in Nashville

    Irwin Kuhn and Dot Dobbins were among the first group of Tennessee attorneys to be trained in collaborative divorce and family law practice which focuses on out of court divorce agreements. The training took place in Nashville at Vanderbilt University Law School. Dot and Irwin participated in additional training with Chip Rose during the summer of 2010 and…
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