The Family Approach

We all have disagreements from time to time that need to be handled as best as possible.  When it comes to legal issues, there are five main ways of handling the situations:

The Kitchen Table

The kitchen table conversation

If you have a good level of communication you can usually sit down with the other person and work out the issue yourselves.  If there is a legal issue, such as a divorce or a breach of contract between a business and supplier, and the party’s want to continue a positive relationship, then this is the way to go.  Fryar Legal Services can help to facilitate the conversation and reduce the agreement to a writing to preserve what is said and ensure that the relationship continues smoothly.  To learn more, click here.



If you have an okay level of communication and can agree on some things, but are having difficulty coming to an agreement on others then mediation may be the best approach.  It allows the parties to work out their differences with a neutral person who can provide clarity, facilitate conversations, keep conversations on track and prevent conversations from becoming confrontations.  Michael Fryar is a trained and experienced mediator whose interest is ensuring that all parties maintain a working relationship throughout the process to retain the potential to work together in the future.  To learn more, click here.


collaborative law diagram

If communication of the parties has broken down, or the parties are not able to come to agreement on core issues, but they want to avoid litigation and maintain positive relationships then collaborative law may be the answer.  For divorce cases with children, for instance, this is an excellent way to ensure that the parents take positive steps toward co-parenting while ensuring the ability to afford two households.  This approach is about looking to the future and not dwelling on the past.  This approach can also be used in other areas of law that involve disputes in ongoing relationships, such as business.  Michael Fryar is a member of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals and the Connecticut Council for Non-adversarial Divorce.  He has received training in the collaborative approach to dispute resolution.  To learn more, click here.

Settlement Conference

settlement conference

If communication has fully broken down and the parties are looking to end the relationship without any future contact, the parties may consider sitting down with attorneys to work out a settlement without going to court.  This may not be a collaborative approach and the process may be adversarial.  If an agreement cannot be reached then litigation may result.  To learn more, click here.



When the party’s cannot come to any form of agreement and the relationship cannot be recovered, then they can take their dispute to court and ask that an impartial third party hear the facts and legal arguments of both sides and determine fault and outcome.  In family law this can result in devastated families that are torn apart by the battles and the outcome is usually not positive.  Michael Fryar does not practice litigation in the family law area but can provide references for litigators should this be the choice you would like to explore.