Mediation is a voluntary, confidential process that can work for couples ending a relationship, parties involved in a lawsuit or other dispute, or anyone with a need for help with a communication problem. Mediation can also be helpful when there’s no dispute, but just a need to make important decisions–for example, about a co-parenting relationship, a living together situation, or a prenuptial agreement.
Mediation is very commonly used in divorce cases, but almost any dispute can be mediated, if the parties are willing to work toward a mutually satisfactory solution.
In many situations, mediation provides a complete alternative to court proceedings or solutions negotiated by attorneys. Because the participants keep control of the process and communicate directly with one another, resolution can be based on their own sense of fairness, needs, and priorities.
The mediation process itself can facilitate healing and improve communication. In situations where the parties will have to deal with each other on an ongoing basis, such as when they are raising children together or are neighbors, this can be especially important.
As a mediator, Emily facilitates communication, provides legal information (but not advice), and helps generate and evaluate ideas and options for resolving the issue. In most cases, she will prepare a written contract reflecting the agreements reached, which each party then takes to an independent attorney for review. In a divorce mediation, Emily will prepare the necessary paperwork to complete an uncontested divorce in court.
Fees for mediation services: $400 per hour.