A New Legal Paradigm
At it's very core, a legal system is concerned with relationships between people. Does it make sense that we rely on a legal approach which was designed 300 years ago? Do we really want to rely on a rationalist, adversarial view that pits person against person? Hasn't human consciousness evolved beyond this?
Integrative Law and Conscious Business
The focus is on the relationships between the parties emphasising collaboration,
self-determination and interests and avoiding resort to the courts. In the commercial arena, the
principles which guide integrative lawyers parallel those of modern businesses - centering on
purpose and values to build trust and ensure economic and relational security. This focus cuts
across multiple areas of legal and business transactions, including supply chain, client
contracts, labour relations and dispute resolution.
Many traditional lawyers lack the breadth of vision necessary to give meaningful structure to
such businesses. Self-management or other innovative purpose-driven models may not be
familiar. The integrative lawyer, however, can ensure that these values are embodied in the
legal structures and documents of the venture. From basic stakeholder capitalist structures,
through conscious business and Teal, Holocratic and other innovative structures and beyond,
the lawyer should be as much of a a conceptual partner as they are a simple service provider.
Similarly, integrative dispute resolution methods such as facilitated negotiation or mediation set
a high priority on the preservation and optimally, strengthening, of the relationship between the
participants rather than the zero-sum outcomes provided by courts and arbitrators.
These are a few examples of where the integrative approach departs from conventional
approaches to law, providing a purpose-driven legal support system for pioneers of evolutionary
Integrative law provides the legal complement to innovative models of doing business -
new organisational structures, conscious capitalism, self management, and
purpose-driven, values-oriented ventures. Why should a business’ consciousness end at
the door to their law offices?
Integrative law is an emerging paradigm, perhaps even a movement, rather than a specific field
of law. It is the next stage in the development of legal thinking, going beyond the rationalist,
adversarial approach which has been in place for the last 300 years and has lost pace with
modern business approaches.
For her book Lawyers as Changemakers, author J Kim Wright interviewed a lot of integrative
lawyers and found 4 “pillars” of the movement:
● Integrative Lawyers are reflective.
● Integrative Lawyers are values and purpose-based.
● Integrative Lawyers are system and design thinkers.
● Integrative Lawyers are harbingers of evolutionary consciousness.
She also found many shared values among practitioners. Not every value is shared by every
lawyer but these are the most common:
● Compassion & Dignity
● Happiness & Wellbeing
● Reuniting Love & Law
● Being Inclusive & Humanizing all the Stakeholders in the System
● Embracing Challenges
● Being Relational
● Making the World a Better Place
● Law as a Spiritual Path
From this mindset, integrative lawyers find or invent new ways of practicing. One example is the
Conscious Contracts® model. Practitioners of restorative justice, collaborative family law
practice, therapeutic jurisprudence, legal design, holistic law, transformative mediation, and
other approaches may also be integrative lawyers.