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Collaborative Law

    To Elspeth, Just to say thanks for all your help over the last 6 months. If it wasn't for you I would have just given up. I really appreciate all the work you put in to this and your constant reassurance that it was the right thing to do.

    Client testimonial about Elspeth Thomson - Family

    Thanks again for your time, approach & actions. After we left he said that you were the first person who'd questioned him, listened & treat him like he was of worth. Be encouraged & encourage others.

    Client testimonial about Sukhi Patter - Family

    I just wanted to write and thank you for all your hard work in handling my case – and for your kindness, patience and empathy.  Having you “fighting” my corner and advising me, made what was a very difficult time a little easier.  Thank you and best wishes.

    Client testimonial about Elspeth Thomson - Family

    This has been the worst week of our lives. Your support, both legal and practical, has helped us to get through it with our sanity intact. The fact that you agreed to see us within 18 hours of my initial phone call was, quite frankly, magnificent. Huge thanks from us all.

    Client testimonial about Lesley Monkhouse - Family

    (Mary) helped me communicate better with my husband & relations were always better after each session, she helped me get my point of view across to him.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw – Mediation

    The MIAM was incredibly helpful. You gave me all of the information I would have expected a solicitor to give me at a first meeting.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Mediation & Family

    You have been superb.

    Client testimonial about Lucy Mead - Family

    Thank you to Mary for the appointment on Wednesday. I found the appointment so helpful and was very overwhelmed with certain elements but Mary was amazing and so kind and honest.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw- Family Mediation

    To say that your professionalism and quality of service have been faultless would be telling only half the story. Throughout all that has gone on, your honest advice and genuine care have been an invaluable support, for which I will always be grateful.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family

    I have found the mediation valuable beyond measure, especially having been so sceptical to begin with.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Mediation

    You do a difficult job very well, you both were very skilled in ensuring that we both felt heard and in control, enabling us to reach agreement.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw & Sukhi Patter - Mediation

    With many thanks for your calm and measured support and guidance during this difficult case.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family

    I am very grateful to you for your time and support. I found you very kind and genuinely caring and appreciate all you did for me.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Mediation

    Thank you for being a fantastic solicitor and source of support Mary I needed it!!!.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family

    Can I please pass on my sincere thanks and gratitude to Ailsa for her compassion and the advice and support she gave me recently.

    Client testimonial about Ailsa Gilhespy - Family Mediation

    Words can’t tell how much we appreciated all the help you gave us over the past few months.

    Client testimonial about Elspeth Thomson - Family

    You offer helpful solutions at times of need, which is of course over and above the pure legal aspects of the support you provide.

    Client testimonial about Ailsa Gilhespy - Mediation

    Firstly many thanks for handling our case and its successful outcome, we are delighted that matters have been sorted.

    Client testimonial about Elspeth Thomson - Family

    Really appreciate your patience and understanding, and great professional approach. Hopefully we will see each other again, if not, I'll happily recommend you to anyone who may need your services.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family

    You have been amazing and I really have appreciated your input.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Mediation

    ‘I really do absolutely appreciate everything you have done for me and the boys and we are in such a better place now with all your advice and support.’

    Client testimonial about Sukhi Patter - Mediation

    Your support and advice has been a great comfort this last year and half. I wish you well too.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family & Mediation

    I met with your mediator, Mary for a MIAM last Wednesday, she was fabulous and I can not speak highly enough of my dealings with your practice so far.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family Mediation

    I do appreciate the skillful support you gave us, the plans that we agreed with you are working well and we are now mostly managing to avoid conflict.

    Client testimonial about Sukhi Patter & Mary Shaw - Mediation

    A huge thank you for guiding me through the mediation process. A truly liberating experience and a novelty that for once my voice could be heard. I couldn’t have succeeded without you. With much appreciation

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Mediation

    We would like to take this opportunity to offer our many thanks for all the help and advice you gave us.

    Client testimonial about Sukhi Patter - Family

    Now that my divorce case is finally over, may I take the opportunity to let you know that I have been very pleased to have been represented by David Gray Solicitors LLP and how much I have appreciated your professional assistance and efficiency throughout the duration.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family

    Mary was understanding and supportive of our situation. [Mediation] helped to make us talk and sort out our finances without the cost of solicitors fees and court fees.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Mediation

    My thanks to Mary for her understanding and support through the last couple of years.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family

    I would like to express my gratitude and thanks to you for the efforts made over the past couple of years to finally get me divorced.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family

    Sukhi Patter made me feel very safe and would get the outcome in my favour. Also at no time did she make me feel worthless because I had got in arrears with paying my mortgage and would like to thank her for the outcome. Thanks very much.

    Client testimonial about Sukhi Patter - Family

    I chose to work with Mary because of her no-nonsense approach – no false promises, no big ego claims – just downright honesty and integrity and a delivery of results at the end. Mary is professional, reassuring and has a great sense of humour. I would highly recommend her.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family

    I couldn't have done it without your help and, once again, I cannot thank you enough for your expertise and very kind attention and consideration in this case.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family

    Thanks for your patience with this Mary; I imagine it was quite difficult for you but then that is why I refer people to you! Quote from a local Family Solicitor

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Mediation

    Many thanks for all the sound advice and for handling a very tricky situation so well.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family

    Thank you again – you have made me feel at ease and I can relax a bit more now

    Client testimonial about Louise Law - Family

    I would like to thank Mary Shaw in particular for her excellent approach, with a balance of professionalism, pragmatism and compassion. I would rate Mary highly as a Mediator & solicitor, and have no hesitation in recommending her services.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Mediation

    Thank you for explaining it all so well.

    Client testimonial about Louise Law - Family

    Thank you so much for all the help and advice. You definitely took some of the stress out of it all.

    Client testimonial about Claire Hunter - Family

    After the mediation session with Mary I felt like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Mediation

    Just wanted to thank you so much for your representation today and your calming influence. Your professionalism and knowledge was second to none.

    Client testimonial about Sukhi Patter - Family

    Sukhi Patter was very good in assisting me and at all times and reassuring that she was in control and very good at what she was doing.

    Client testimonial about Sukhi Patter - Family

    Thank you for your highly professional support, and attention to detail……. At the start I was not sure how the long distance collaboration would work but it has been a very friendly, easy, working relationship between us, and I appreciate very much how you conveyed a sense of solidarity to me even though we have never met. I would also like to thank Kim who was the perfect 'relay' between us whenever it was necessary.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family

    Thanks for all help and support through a very difficult time it is much appreciated.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family

    Mary Shaw has been an absolute delight to work with on finalizing my divorce. I deeply appreciate your agreeing to advise me on this matter. Your advice to me has been simply invaluable.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family

    We are immensely grateful to you and your team for the outcome of the court order today. The whole process has been quite stressful, but we felt fully supported and completely guided by you. You were a good friend rather than a legal contact. Your expertise of the law and how to overcome the hurdles in this difficult case were superb.

    Client testimonial about Elspeth Thomson - Family

    Thank you, …….. for your help and professionalism during this process

    Client testimonial about Sukhi Patter - Mediation

    Just to say thank you for the time and energy you put in during our mediation process.  You could not have been more calm and understanding, in what I feel were very challenging and somewhat unique circumstances.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family Mediation

    Many thanks for all your help and hard work in getting these orders in place.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family

    Can I just pass on my thanks for all your efforts with regard to the finance case and result we achieved.

    Client testimonial about Mary Shaw - Family

In the Collaborative Law process (also known as Collaborative Family Law or Collaborative Practice) each person has his or her own specially trained lawyer. You, your partner and both lawyers work as a team to resolve issues through a series of roundtable 4-way meetings (two of you plus two lawyers).

We all sign an agreement at the beginning that we will not go to court. If one of you later changes your mind about this, both of you have to appoint new lawyers. This helps to ensure we all remain focussed on constructively resolving the issues and threatening phrases like “see you in court” lose all meaning. In our experience, this feature of the agreement is very powerful and encourages imaginative problem solving and allows you to reach a truly tailor-made set of solutions for you both and for your children.

Unlike court where a judge decides what is important in your case, if something is important to one of you, then it is important in the process and will be given time.  The following video provides a useful introduction to Collaborative Law:

Our specialist lawyers at our Newcastle and South Shields offices are by your side throughout the collaborative law process to manage the discussions in a constructive, non-confrontational way. As the discussions take place face to face there is little room for misunderstandings.

Our collaborative lawyers are trained to help you to overcome communication difficulties so you can focus on finding the solutions that are right for your family. They will advise and guide you about the law, working together to encourage you to consider the whole family’s needs.

It is usual for other professionals to be brought into the collaborative law process to help us all find solutions for your family. These people can include accountants, pensions experts, tax advisers and family consultants to offer emotional support and insight to help you through.

Meetings usually last for one to two hours and typically, there are between two and four meetings, depending on how complex your case is.

We undertook the first collaborative case in the North East over 10 years ago and now have four collaborative lawyers in our team. We are ranked in the top category in each of the independent legal directories – The Legal 500 rank us in the top tier where we are noted for our collaborative law work and in Chambers and Partners we are also listed in Band 1 where the team are noted as “standing out for its collaborative law expertise”.

For more information or to make an appointment contact our family team in Newcastle or South Shields by email to louise.law@davidgray.co.uk or on 0191 243 8163.

The team specialising in this area of work

  • Partner
  • Solicitor
  • Solicitor