What is mediation?
Mediation is a voluntary, collaborative process for resolving disputes using the help of an impartial, third party.
Do I need to bring an attorney?
Sometimes it's helpful to have an attorney present during mediation, but it is not required. This is a question to discuss with your attorney.
Is a mediated agreement binding?
The mediator will prepare a memorandum of understanding that summarizes the agreement. If both parties want an enforceable, binding agreement, then a legal document must be prepared.
Does the mediator make decisions if we don't agree?
A mediator is not a decision maker. Rather, the disputing parties control the outcome in mediation by deciding how to resolve the issues at hand. Because parties create their own agreement, mediation helps preserve interests and maintain relationships.
Can we mediate if we have a Protective Order?
A Protective Order or Stalking Injunction must allow for mediation. If you have an order of protection, please submit a copy of the order to the mediator before scheduling mediation.
How should I prepare
It is helpful to identify your goals and what you would like to achieve as a result of mediation. You might also think about the topics that you and the other party need to address and bring all documentation that will help the other party understand how you view the situation. For example, if you are planning to divide martial assets as part of a divorce action, you will want to bring information about the property values, purchase costs, and outstanding debts owed for the property. If you will be addressing a debt claim, you will want to bring documentation about the original agreement and all payments made to date toward the debt. If child support is discussed, you will need to bring a recent pay stub and tax returns from the previous year.