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Common Questions

We are separating and want to cooperate about settling the finances

Many people are able to work together fairly and amicably to settle their divorce. Instead of going to court, mediation or a collaborative law process can be used to settle issues.

Good starting points include:

  • Collaborative Law, from the provincial government, describes what collaborative law involves and why people use it.
  • JP Boyd on Family Law: Avoiding Court, from Courthouse Libraries BC, provides a more detailed overview of collaborative law, mediation, arbitration and parenting coordination.
  • Legal Forms & Documents, on the Family Law in BC website from LSS, has a section called "Agreement". It includes "Who can help you reach an agreement?", describing how to deal with family law issues without going to court.
See the related Common Question, "How can mediation help me with a separation (divorce) agreement?"

Need more help?

  • Family Justice Centres, from the provincial government, has family justice counsellors who can help parents resolve disagreements without going to court. They provide short-term counselling, mediation, and referrals, but not legal advice.
  • Family LawLINE, from Legal Services Society, provides legal advice about family law issues for low-income people.
  • Mediate BC has a list of qualified family mediators. Some mediators may offer services on a sliding scale or probono. Contact the mediator to enquire.
  • Lawyer Referral Service, from Access Pro Bono, helps you connect with a lawyer for a free initial consultation with a lawyer for up to 30 minutes. You may also ask for a collaborative family lawyer.
  • Pro Bono Collaborative Divorce Project, from BC Collaborative Roster Society, provides their service for parties who are willing to meet and negotiate using the principles of collaborative practice but are unable to afford the collaborative team for their case. Apply online to be considered. 
  • Find more help near you on Clicklaw HelpMap. 

See our related common questions:

Last reviewed December 2017
mediation, collaborative dispute resolution, collaborative family law, resolving disputes without going to court, alternative dispute resolution