This flowchart outlines the steps involved in the mediation process. All forms will be provided in hard copy. Click on each step for more details.
This first conversation occurs over the telephone. The main purpose is to schedule an appointment to meet in person. Our discussion will include:
1. Any questions about the process;
2. Background information to start a client file;
3. Confirm the Second Party is aware mediation is being considered;
4. How to make contact with the Second Party.
The same conversation will take place with the second party. When both parties agree to move forward with mediation, individual interviews will be scheduled.
NOTE: Details about your situation will be discussed during the Individual Interview.
Individually we discuss the details of the situation. We will determine if mediation is the proper process. Next we establish priorities, confirm goals and review what documentation will be required to move forward. A copy of the Retainer Contract will be provided for review.
Joint Planning Session
Our first session with all parties at the table will be a planning session. We shall determine how the mediation will be conducted, review and sign the Retainer Contract and determine what type of mediation will be used. The Retainer fee is collected at this time.
The number of mediation sessions will depend on the cooperation of the parties. Sessions run for about an hour, sometimes more if headway is being made. Mediation sessions are more successful with a defined aim. To accomplish this, only one or two topics are discussed each session.
The final session in the mediation process is reviewing the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). The MOU is a written summary of all topics covered during the mediation process. This is a detailed, line by line review to ensure the accuracy of the document. Corrections are made immediately and the final draft is printed. After the MOU is finalized the parties sign the Disclaimer and copies of the MOU are provided to each party.
There are two ways to submit the Memorandum of Understanding to the courts to make a legally binding agreement:
1. Submit the forms directly to the court by filling out the required court forms yourself; or
2. Request a lawyer to draft and submit the court forms for you (I recommend this option).
NOTE: Fees may apply in both cases.
Your situation will change – so too should your terms. If you require some assistance to make updates to your agreement, contact me. We can mediate specific clauses or reopen the entire agreement. The most common updates are made to Support Payments as individuals incomes change, Access Schedules as children grow up and new partners are introduced.
Please contact me directly for more information about your specific situation .