Friday, October 10, 2008

Mediation Notes

Outside of Marion County, I am unaware of any counties requiring mediation. Which means mediation is a rarity for the average divorce. I do suggest reading the full articles I link to below if you want to know more about mediation.

First is Indiana Family Law's How not to have a successful family law mediation:

"Parents especially need to be in the right frame of mind when they sit down together in the same room with a mediator. For at least the time before and during the mediation, the parties need to be ready and able to set aside their own anger, hurt and other emotions that will get in the way. They need to have something that helps them focus on the big picture, the long-term goal, what’s really important.

If we attorneys want the mediation to be a mediocre experience, let’s stick with the standard practices. If parties out there reading this want to blow a good opportunity to make real progress, don’t ask your lawyers for more assistance in getting prepared."
And Mediation in a Divorce Case from the Mississippi Family Law Blog has a very good description of how a mediation should run:
Mediators are generally very experienced in the family law and/or conflict field and have also undergone mediation training. Good mediators present their unbiased views of the situation in a very frank but helpful manner – not hesitating to tell a party that they are being unreasonable when necessary. If mediation is successful, the mediator will usually draft a memorandum agreement for the parties to sign – or quick moving attorneys can even produce a complete settlement agreement - before the parties conclude the conference.
Mediation can be useful, but it is only a tool and not a cure-all. In my opinion, mediation will work when the parties have the funds to afford the costs of mediation and both parties can be brought to see reason.

1/1/2010: I wrote again on this topic in Reasons for Mediation Failure.

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