Understanding the Mediation Process
Mediation for family law issues, such as divorce, custody, support, asset and debt division, offers a fair process in which the parties can discuss and decide for themselves, with professional help of the mediator, arrangements for their children, support and property division. The parties jointly hire a neutral mediator to act, not as the attorney for either or both, but as a neutral facilitator of solutions. During a series of meetings, the couple and the mediator work out a mutually satisfactory plan covering the children’s living arrangements, financial needs of the family and all other issues that need a solution. Both are encouraged to consult with an attorney or other advisor outside the mediation session, to assist the party with the final terms of an agreement. The mediation process is designed to reduce the adversarial element often encountered in a divorce proceeding and can also save time and money.
Attorney Coristine has been a certified family law mediator since 2003. As a mediator, she can provide services as a neutral third-party, or she can represent a client during the client’s involvement in the mediation process.
Voluntarily Resolving Differences
Mediation itself is not a binding legal process. Once both parties agree on all divorce/paternity related matters, the mediator drafts an agreement that is submitted to the court. After the court reviews the agreement, it is approved and becomes a binding legal document, finalizing the divorce or paternity matter.