Family Mediation Services:

What is family mediation?

Family mediation is a process which facilitates the resolution of family disputes by promoting the parties voluntary agreement. 

What is a family mediator’s role?

A family mediator assists with communication, encourages understanding and focuses the parties on their individual and common interests.  The family mediator works with the parties to explore options, make decisions and reach their own agreements.

What is a family mediator’s role regarding child(ren)?

A family mediator assists parties in promoting  the best interests of the child(ren):

  1. Develop a parenting plan that covers the child(ren)’s physical residence, parenting time and responsibilities for the child(ren) 

  1. Include specific levels of detail as agreed to by the parties. 

  1. Incorporate a dispute resolution process to facilitate future revisions of the agreement to meet the changing needs of the children. 

How is family mediation organized?

Parties will sign an mediation agreement, complete a mediation preparation guide to assist in identifying individual and common interests and determine a neutral location, date and time to begin mediation.

What are some possible common interests usually identified in mediation?

  1. Parenting time

  2. Communication

  3. Sibling contact

  4. Extended family contact

  5. Living arrangements

  6. Transportation (pick up/drop off times and location)

  7. Holidays

  8. School/extra curricular activities

  9. Spirituality

  10. Medical/dental/financial  

What does a typical mediation agenda look like?

  1. Welcome and introductions

  2. Communication guidelines

  3. Confidentiality

  4. Mediate common interests (typically 2-3 sessions) and if needed develop a plan for any issues that were unable to be resolved in mediation

  5. Go over finalized mediation agreement

  6. Celebrate accomplishments

How is the family mediation agreement distributed?

When parties have come to an agreement on their common interests, the family mediator and parties will make arrangements to sign and receive copies of their mediation agreement.  

Frequently Asked Questions:

Who are the family mediators?

Family mediators are professional, trained and experienced in mediation skills.  They are usually assigned in teams of two.  They are specifically skilled in maintaining a neutral positive environment for resolving disputes.

Where will the meetings be held?

Meetings are held in a comfortable atmosphere and a culturally appropriate neutral location for all parties. 

How long do meetings last?

Family mediation sessions typically last 2-4 hours depending on the various issues the parties want mediated.  The family mediator and parties will identify issues prior to mediation to assist the process in being precise, productive and cost effective.