What is the mediation process?

Cindy Best

One way that a lawsuit can be resolved is through mediation. Family law mediation is a method of resolving issues and disputes during the difficult time of divorce by talking with a mediator to resolve your disagreements. Family law mediation can also be used to help persons with other legal family issues, such as separation, child decision-making, child support, post-decree modifications, disputes about parenting issues after a divorce, domestic partnership issues with children and property, and unmarried persons issues with children and property.

How Mediation Works

The mediator is a neutral third party that assists the parties in resolving their issues. These proceedings are confidential, and nothing can be used in a court proceeding. The success of mediation depends on the attitudes of the parties. If either party has an attitude of wanting to “win” or to “hurt” the other person, mediation probably will not work. The process begins with an initial meeting that typically lasts one to two hours. The mediator listens to both sides present their story, then goes back and forth between the two sides to help create a settlement that both sides can agree to. However, it is not guaranteed that a settlement will always be reached because both parties must concur for there to be any agreements made. Often, more than one conference may be needed to resolve the issues. A very important thing to remember is that mediation takes time.

Advantages of Mediation

Best Interests of the Children: Mediation is designed to help parents focus on the best interests of any children involved. The mediation process helps the parties remain aware that despite their differences that brought them to the mediation process, they must continue to communicate for the sake of their child.

Custom Agreements: Mediation permits the parties, rather than the court, to control the outcome of their case. These agreements typically result from both parties’ determination of how they will share their children, who will pay child support and how much, how major decisions concerning their children will be made, and how to equitably divide property and debts.

Mediation with Best Law Firm

Mediation with Best Law Firm is designed to be a win-win solution for the parties involved. While a retained attorney to represent the parties’ interests is not required, outside counsel is also not discouraged. Best Law Firm can also complete your matter by drafting all the necessary documents to be submitted to the court. By allowing a mediator to assist your family in resolving your issues, you can avoid court and all the other paperwork requirements for a litigated matter. Attempting mediation before courtroom litigation will save you time and money. If you would prefer to avoid the headache of a courtroom, mediation may be the process for you!

If you have any additional questions about the mediation process, please check out our book:

The Divorce Coach: Your Guide to Arizona Divorce” – available on Amazon.

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