Divorce Mediation Lands on Common Ground
If you and your soon-to-be-ex share a common goal to bring a fair and balanced perspective to the divorcing process, mediation can be a perfect route to take. Amanda DuBois and Lucia Levias are trained mediators available to provide mediation services for all kinds of family matters.
We listen to your concerns, prioritize your goals, and explore creative ways to jointly resolve your disputes. Negotiate both temporary and permanent financial and child custody aspects of family law matters with our skilled mediators.
Choice > Commands
Mediation can afford you the luxury of more creative problem-solving and better shared outcomes that go far beyond the rigid confines of the court. Mediated agreements tend to be more “durable” because they’re entered into by choice, not imposed upon each person by a judge. As a result, successful mediations tend to decrease returns to court in future years.
Better for Kids
Divorce mediation can be an incredible tool for parents with complicated work schedules or children with unique needs. Judges have busy calendars, and the court is quite limited in the types of residential schedules and solutions it generally orders. For a custom-fit parenting plan—possible the single most import document defining your child’s future—make it together. You know best what your kids need.
WHAT ISSUES CAN BE MEDIATED?
Decisions often need to be made for the time period when a divorce is filed, and the final divorce is entered. Who will live where? What will the kids’ schedule be with each parent? Who pays what bills? Some people will figure all this out on their own, others head directly to court. But one good solution people often overlook is to attend a mediation where these thorny issues can be sorted out. Our mediators have years of experience helping clients work through financial and parenting issues to carry them through the months before their final agreement can be reached.
Parenting Plan Disputes.
Most parenting plans require parties to attend dispute resolution when they have a disagreement about parenting issues, or how to interpret fuzzy language in their parenting plan. A common dispute involves which school a child will attend. Or perhaps a child has grown up since the plan was entered into and their interests have changed in a way not anticipated by the plan. Our mediators have developed 100s (maybe 1000s) of parenting plans and will work with parties to find creative solutions to disagreements about their parenting plans.
Final Divorce Settlements.
To settle a divorce, the parties must juggle many life-changing issues, often in a one-day mediation.
Creative, Balanced POV from Experienced Mediators.
Weigh these two options: Leave precious decisions up to a stranger (however wise) who hears a couple days of testimony and makes a cookie-cutter plan for your future financial security and your kids. Or create your own roadmap that fits you and your life like a puzzle piece. Creative and focused on fairness, our trained family law attorneys are here to help.
Mediation Representation Offers Neutral Problem-Solving
Disentangling entire lives is never easy. Mediation gives you an alternative path to court involvement that shares costs and elevates your control over the outcome of your divorce. This allows for more creative problem-solving and better outcomes beyond the rigid confines of the court.
Mediation agreements tend to be more durable because they are entered into by mutual choice, not imposed from the outside. This decreases court returns in future years. Especially if you have kids, mediation can help you better co-parent and communication far into the future.
In Washington, all cases must attempt mediation before they ever see the inside of a courtroom.
Mediation representation typically happens after the period of discovery—when financial assets, debts, and other relevant information have been revealed and reviewed. Both lawyers then seek out a trusted, agreed-upon mediator. Trained for this designation, DuBois Levias can serve as mediation representation.
Before the representation session, both attorneys will put together solid proposals to share with the opposing party and mediator in advance. It’s important to do a risk analysis and develop legal arguments to firm up your angle.
A mediation typically lasts a full day. Sometimes more. Most mediations are a “shuttle” style mediation that separates the divorcing couple into different rooms. Increasingly, mediations are even being held on Zoom in breakout rooms.
Your lawyer may or may not be with you during a mediation. Mediators help bring people together to compromise in a neutral way, but don’t hold authority to make any definitive decision. If a mediation fails, a divorcing couple will sometimes hire a private arbitrator to make a ruling.
Legalese Defined: MED/ARB
This strange sounding abbreviation is actually a two-step dispute resolution process that combines mediation and arbitration. Initially, two parties will try to reach a settlement through mediation. If unsuccessful, they’ve mutually agreed to empower their mediator to step into the shoes of an arbitrator to make a final decision.