Legal Matters Alternative Dispute Resolution
I have heard about ‘mediation’ as an option to resolve a family law dispute. How does this work?
Over the past several years there have been major efforts by the Court System, The Attorney General and the legal profession to develop strategies to promote the early and economical resolutions of matrimonial and other family law disputes both in and outside of the courts.
For most of us, the costs of financing a court dispute when our marriage or partnerships fail become very high and beyond our ability to pay for, given the complexity of the statutory and the common law. Resolving to fight things out in the court system can be ruinous both financially and also harmful to the way the family functions in the future, particularly as it relates to children.
In some situations, having to resort to the services of an experienced mediator to help resolve custody, access, child/spousal maintenance and property issues in a less costly, quicker and confidential way may be very appropriate.
A mediator is not a judge and will not give any decision. He or she may suggest options to consider to resolve their issues but in the end it is the clients themselves who together decide how the various disputes will settle.
Mediation sessions will be held at an agreed upon site and will be conducted in a confidential, private and neutral way. It will be very helpful that each party hire a lawyer to assist them through the mediation; help chose an experienced mediator, and prepare their clients as to what to expect in the process, write the necessary briefs, to draft the necessary agreements or minutes of settlement.