What is mediation and how does it work?

Posted on January 22, 2012

Mediation is a form of alternative dispute resolution that is commonly used in family matters. It allows participants to meet together with a trained, neutral professional in order to discuss and, hopefully resolve, their issues. Various techniques and methods of mediation can be utilized to try to ensure the effectiveness of the process. Mediation is a popular alternative to litigation due to the privacy and confidentiality it allows participants. Further, it generally permits participants to retain more control over both the process and the results. Finally, mediation is typically a less costly method for resolving issues in divorce than litigation.

During the mediation, the mediator typically moderates the discussion between the parties, offering non-binding suggestions throughout. Because the mediator is neutral and does not represent either party, the mediator does not give legal advice. Thus, it is both important and helpful for each party to retain an attorney outside the mediation. Although attorneys are generally not present during mediation meetings, participants can benefit from their guidance and their ability to counsel and ensure that their client is getting a fair deal. The importance of this guidance is especially clear in cases where settlement agreements signed by the parties become binding. Thus, there are key benefits to using mediation, but it is important to make sure your interests are well represented throughout.

The attorneys at Otis & Associates, P.C., do not provide mediation at present, but the firm maintains a list of experienced and skillful divorce mediators for the benefit of their clients.

Written by Stacy B. Seltzer, associate attorney at Otis & Associates, P.C., and edited by Gail P. Otis

Divorce, Mediation Tags: divorce, mediation Comments (0) Trackbacks (0)

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