House Approves Legislation to Increase Collaborative Law Participation
HARRISBURG – The House on Wednesday approved legislation by Rep. Kate Klunk (R-Hanover) to create a uniform framework for the practice of Collaborative Law, which speeds up the legal process and lessens the financial and emotional toll placed upon participants of some court proceedings, in Pennsylvania.

“Collaborative law has proven itself to be a legal proceeding that works,” Klunk said. “Hundreds of attorneys in the Commonwealth have used this alternative dispute resolution process successfully. House Bill 1644 aims to broaden its use to even more attorneys, which, as a result, would entice more people involved in court proceedings to select collaborative law over traditional litigation.”

Collaborative law is a voluntary alternative dispute resolution process for parties that seek to have their legal matters resolved outside the courtroom. One of the hallmarks of collaborative law is that parties are individually represented every step of the way by separate counsel dedicated not only to their respective clients’ interests, but also to resolving the dispute without resorting to litigation. Additionally, parties agree that, should they fail to negotiate a resolution, they will each be required to retain new counsel for any subsequent litigation.

Collaborative law has been widely and successfully used in divorce proceedings. Other areas of the law in which it has been used include family law, business law and estate distribution. The process would be particularly useful in emotionally charged proceedings such as divorce and custody disputes.

The bill now goes to the Senate for consideration.

Representative Kate A. Klunk
169th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Greg Gross
717.260.6374 /

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