Divorce Mediation Blog

Civility Guidelines for Family Lawyers

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

The Massachusetts Bar Association recently endorsed a set of “Civility Guidelines for Family Law Attorneys”. It is amazing to us that in 2017 this project should have been necessary, but we have no doubt of it; and the ten points are both simple and profound.

Moreover, these tenets don’t just apply to the courtroom. They are equally applicable to the arbitration or mediation room, the four-way meeting, attorney correspondence, and the ongoing processing of every case, including negotiation. In truncated form the ten commandments of civility are:

  • Dress appropriately.
  • Be on time and prepared.
  • Treat people with courtesy and respect.
  • Wait your turn – don’t interrupt or shout.
  • Be honest – in verbal and written word.
  • Follow the rules (about notice and service)
  • Respond timely.
  • Focus on the facts in issue.
  • Negotiate in good faith after full disclosure.
  • Do not use court in a revengeful manner.

Sometimes the truest things shouldn’t have to be said – be bear reminder nonetheless.


“Corporate Mortality” and Valuation

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

We have often puzzled over business valuation methodologies that assume a company’s perpetual life. We recently read for the first time about the expert questioning of this assumption within the context of a discounted cash flow analysis. Business immortality is unrealistic and maturing companies also tend to experience slowing growth.

It appears that the data is not yet clear on these phenomena, which may explain why the valuation community has not yet embraced this consciousness. But, pursuit and application of this knowledge seems material to not overstating business values, while reflecting reality more closely.

We look forward to reading further about positive developments on the important issue.


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