Mediation services are available through our organization as a support to parents. We specialize in divorce negotiations, parenting time, and custody. Appointments are scheduled Monday through Friday. Evening appointments are available upon request Monday through Thursday. Weekend appointments are available in special circumstances.
Mediation is a joint problem solving process with the assistance of a trained third-party neutral. Attorneys usually are not present during the process. Persons not involved directly in the process (such as attorneys, grandparents, family friend, children, current spouse or significant other) are not allowed to be present during a session unless discussed and agreed to in advance by the mediator and both parties.
Mediation is particularly helpful in divorce, custody and parenting time conflicts when coupled with the Parents Forever program. The parties are in control of the decisions they make. The mediator does not make the decisions for the parties, such as an arbitration process, but guides the parties in working through all possible options for resolution. The mediator works with the parties to resolve the issues and challenges. The mediator directs the process and guides the negotiations towards completion. The mediator will put the agreements of the parties in writing.
The role of mediation is to (1) provide the parties the opportunity to explore options; (2) guide discussions and (3) guide the parties into resolution that meets the needs of all people involved, particularly the children. Mediation also has a teaching role. Parties learn effective communication and problem solving techniques through the mediation model to better equip them to resolve future issues that may arise without intervention. The ultimate goal of mediation is to prevent or end litigation to save time, money and emotional drain of the parties and the family as a whole.
Mediation is a conflict resolution process whereby a trained facilitator works with the parties to seek resolution ending or preventing litigation, addressing the needs, concerns and challenges of the parties involved. When working with separating parents, the facilitator assists parents in transitioning into single parent households and address child related concerns, including child support, child care and medical insurance coverage. The facilitator assists parties of divorce address issues surrounding their children, division of marital assets and real estate, 401K savings and pensions, and spousal support.
The parties can save considerably in litigation costs when they enter a mediation process early on in a divorce or custody process. Mediation is an affordable alternative to litigation. Mediation draws down defenses and helps parties look for "win-win" solutions for everyone.
Cost of mediation:
$175 per hour with sessions lasting two hours. The number of sessions is dependent upon the needs of the parties. The fees are equally divided between the parties, unless there is one party that is near the poverty guidelines, in which the fees will be divided according to income percentages. Mediation works best when both parties are invested in the process.
Attending our Parents Forever class before entering mediation can greatly reduce mediation time as well as help parents prepare to work with their attorneys more effectively. Being organized and informed before working with professionals will save time and cost.
Community Dispute Program
There is a fund available to provide mediation on a sliding fee basis for parents not represented by legal counsel, on county assistance or poverty level. Verification of need will be required. Services are limited to parenting time and custody and limited to three hours of services. Because funding is limited, approval of applications must be assessed according to funds remaining, urgency and need. Please call our office to inquire at 218-263-7307.
Online dispute resolution, or oftentimes referred to as ODR, is a mediation process done online. We offer online dispute resolution services as a resource to parents under special circumstances, such as geographical distance of a parent that prevents the traditional mediation process to occur or in situations where no contact mediation is a safer alternative due to domestic violence or intimidation.
Online dispute resolution in domestic violence situations is reserved for first time situations only and is not an alternative for repeated domestic situations. If there is an order for protection in place, even online dispute resolution that provides no contact mediation needs prior approval of the court. It can be very helpful in addressing interim financial negotiations and parenting time schedules, and put into place safe exchange and a communication process so parents are able to address the needs of the children.
Cost for online dispute resolution: The cost is $100 per hour per party if mediated through computer headphones that does not accrue long distance charges. If parties desire to also use an audio gateway rather than a headset, the parties will equally split the long distance charges. Sessions are one hour in length and pre-payment is required.
Last Updated (Sunday, 25 September 2011 11:31)