At CE Family Lawyers, we look beyond the traditional approaches to helping you navigate through the journey of separation.

We offer a range of alternative services that are designed to resolve your issues and arrangements in a respectful way and will ultimately result in a negotiated separation agreement with your partner.

We believe negotiated separation agreements provide better and more sustainable outcomes and are also effective in reducing conflict between separated partners.

Collaborative Practice

Collaborative Practice:

  • Gives you direct control over outcomes.
  • Promotes consensus and agreement.
  • Minimises conflict.

With Collaborative Practice, the focus is on achieving solutions that meet your individual needs and requirements. The process is underpinned by a commitment to resolve issues by agreement without the involvement of the family law court or the threat of litigation.

How it works

The discussion and negotiation in Collaborative Practice takes place through a series of meetings involving you and your partner and your collaboratively trained lawyers.

Other professionals including child specialists, financial experts and valuers can be brought into the process as required. These specialists work with you and your lawyers to identify, explore and resolve the concerns of both parties.

Collaborative practice requires complete, open, honest and transparent disclosure of all information. It's very effective and has a success rate of about 95%.

We are members of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals ( and of the Collaborative Practice Section of the Law Institute of Victoria (


Mediation is a voluntary and confidential negotiation process in which a professionally trained mediator helps you and your partner to identify, address and resolve the issues surrounding separation and divorce.

How it works

Mediation takes place over one or more meetings.

The mediator facilitates discussion but does not provide any legal advice or make any decisions, which means that ultimately the solutions in mediation are created by you and your partner. The mediator remains neutral at all times, simply managing the process and assisting with the exchange of information and the development of the divorce settlement.

You are both free and encouraged to obtain legal advice about legal issues that arise during the course of the mediation.

Mediation has a high success rate. Lawyers can represent parties in the mediation process but often parties attend mediation without a lawyer.

Constructive Negotiation

Constructive negotiation enables you and your partner to negotiate with each other through your lawyers.

You each brief your lawyers about your expectations and the lawyers negotiate to reach agreement through correspondence or round table meetings or a combination of both.

How it works

With constructive negotiation lawyers play a more active role in the negotiation process.

The method of communication - correspondence, telephone attendances, meetings - can vary but the objective is still to reach a negotiated separation agreement.

This process doesn't require clients to be together in the same room.


In circumstances where other resolution options are not successful, as divorce lawyers we can help you institute separation or divorce proceedings in an appropriate court, such as the Family Court or Federal Magistrates Court, where decisions can be made by a judicial officer.