Mediation in Family Law
Mediation is very often ordered in each family law (divorce, initial custody, or custody modification) case in Canyon County or Ada County. Once mediation is ordered, and a mediator is appointed the client will need to contact the mediator and set an appointment. Different mediators have documents or intake forms which need to be filled out and completed prior to the first mediation. It can be typical for the Court to order approximately three mediation sessions be completed.
The mediator is a neutral third party who attempts to assist the parties in reaching a resolution. Each mediator will charge a fee, and the fee will vary. Typically, the attorney does not attend the mediation with the client. Therefore, before a client attends mediation it is important that the client is prepared for mediation. The following issues are things you should discuss with your attorney prior to the mediation appointment:
• Learn who the mediator is
• Discuss the mediation process
• Discuss any legal terms needed in mediation
• Review what possible outcomes of the case are
• Discuss how to negotiate
• Ask for attorney review of agreement
Mediation is sometimes a very useful and helpful process in a family law case and the client should be prepared to attempt to resolve the matter if mediation is ordered. By preparing before the mediation appointment the client will have a higher chance of making the mediation session productive. That being said, in some high conflict cases no matter the preparation the case might be one which needs to move forward in litigation beyond mediation, and in those cases it’s important to focus the mediation on what issues, if any, can be resolved.