How Does Mediation Work?
In every family law case the court requires the parties to attempt to resolve their case at mediation.
There are two types of mediation available for parties: court ordered and private mediation.
If your income is below 50,000, the parties qualify for court ordered mediation and the mediator is assigned to them via the court. These mediators are all qualified and received specialized training. The court ordered mediation fee is invoiced at a lower rate in the majority of cases then what would you pay under the private mediation rate.
If your income is above 50,000, you may then take private mediation. One benefit of private mediation is that the parties may select the mediator they want to use. The private mediator will advise the parties ahead of time of their intake procedures as well as their rate schedule.
During mediation, the process begins with the mediator reviewing with the parties the goals and rules of the road during the mediating session. Traditionally, the parties do not sit together in one room but instead each party sits in a separate room and if they have an attorney that her attorney would sit with them and the mediator meets with each party individually and moves between each room to facilitate a resolution.
Prior to attending mediation, usually your attorney will cement to the mediator a summary of the issues present in the case and this document helps the mediator be prepared to best help you reach resolution.
If the matter is successfully resolved, the parties will enter into a written agreement which states what they have agreed upon. For some families they are able to resolve their entire case at mediation but others may only resolve apart. For those families who were unable to reach any resolution, the mediator notifies the court of an impasse and the matter continues to be heard by the Circuit Court judge.
Mediation is a confidential process and things that are shared in mediation are not allowed to be discussed in front of the judge during the ongoing litigation. This is helpful as it allows the parties participating in mediation to consider options that they might not normally present to the court.
Some cases have multiple mediations but others may only have one. As the parties guide the mediation process, each family may select their best path to reach resolution.
A mediator is not allowed to tell you how the judge would decide but instead the mediators goal is to help the parties reach resolution which is acceptable to both and one that is in accordance with Florida law.
Once families better understand how the mediation process works the fear which one party may have about having to negotiate or resolve their legal issue abates. The goal of the mediation process is to reduce the conflict of the family all matter and help your family move forward in its new reorganized form.
Our experienced family law attorneys are available to help with all Florida family law matters. Please feel free to contact our law office and let us know how we can assist you. Call (813) 284-0687 or (727) 345-0041 or alternatively you can complete our inquiry form and we will promptly contact you.
Learn More: P.E.A.C.E. the Family Law Acronym
Learn More: Why Mediation Matters
Learn More: Collaborative Verse Litigation