Many collaborative lawyers in Texas also take on litigation cases. Some clients prefer a collaborative approach, but find themselves in situations where their spouses won’t participate in the collaborative process. In those cases, collaboratively-trained lawyers will participate in litigation, being principled advocates for their clients — yet looking for opportunities to resolve issues outside of the courtroom if it all possible.
But Kevin Fuller, a Dallas-based lawyer and an advocate for collaborative law, who has served as president of the Collaborative Law Institute of Texas, is at the forefront of a new trend among Texas lawyers of leaving litigation behind entirely.
As detailed in this article from yesterday’s edition of the Fort Mill Times, Fuller is starting a new firm that will strictly deal with mediation and collaboration. Fuller has had a long career in family law, and has participated in numerous litigation cases as well as collaborative ones — including famously helping Ed Bailey secure a collaborative divorce after he and his former spouse, as written about by D Magazine last year, spent over $7 million in legal fees attempting to go the litigation route.
Fuller noted in the article about his new firm, “At my core I am a problem solver. For 30 years, I have used every means available to keep clients from making bad financial decisions. My new practice will serve not only high stakes Texas family law cases but also broken business relationships and business ‘divorces.’ I will mediate, facilitate, consult and collaborate, but no longer litigate.”
Fuller’s quote highlights not only the problem-solving nature of collaborative law, but also the applicability for collaborative law to be used in business as well as family scenarios. And his decision to step away from litigation entirely is a powerful, personal testament to his belief in the collaborative process.