Christopher C. Peace
Osborn Conflict Resolution
I became interested in collaborative law practice due to my strong conviction that litigation rarely, if ever, addresses the true sources of conflict between parties to a dispute, whether occurring within family, employment, or other business relationships. Courtroom battling does little to resolve, much less repair or improve, relationships that are challenged by personal hurt or deep disagreement. Whereas court-involvement tends to strip away the emotional reality of conflict in favor of filings, hearings, rules of document exchange, and the strategizing that goes along with the “game” of litigation, collaborative conflict resolution represents a conscious choice to move in a different direction which dares to imagine agreed-upon outcomes based in mutual respect—not “zero-sum” thinking.
I came to collaborative law through a winding path of life in which law practice was not my first career. After a period of general civil and healthcare practice, I spent three years as a child abuse and neglect attorney in Mecklenburg County, facing down some of the most difficult and damaging situations that confront our community, especially its children. My experience working with compassion to reunite some of our most under-resourced families also imbued me with gratitude for those among us who recognize the problems in their lives and sincerely undertake to avoid their ill effects. Whereas marriage does not always work out, the long-term benefits of taking the “high road” in relationship conflict cannot be understated. What this road less traveled requires is a willingness to face conflict with courage, an open mind, and a listening heart.