At the Law Offices of William P. Glavin, APC, we believe strongly in mediation as an alternative to litigation and strive to help parties jointly reach fair, informed and sustainable settlements. Divorce is a stressful and costly undertaking. Our skilled mediators are able to facilitate productive communication so that parties may negotiate workable agreements and move forward with their lives.
What is Mediation
Mediation is a process where parties work with a trained and impartial third party to negotiate a settlement that takes into account the law and practicalities of their situation as well as the needs and emotions of those involved. This process is voluntary and confidential. As mediators, we have no power to render judgment or force parties to reach an agreement. Nor do we legally represent either party. Instead, our role is to create a safe and neutral environment where parties can freely communicate and explore workable solutions. The goal is for the parties, with our expert guidance, to negotiate the terms of their own divorce. This agreement can then be put into writing, signed and filed for entry with the Court.
The Advantages of Mediation
There are many advantages to mediation, not the least of which are the substantial time and cost savings (emotional as well as financial) over traditional litigation. Protracted litigation can take years, while a successful mediation can reach the same result in significantly less time and at a fraction of the cost. Moreover, because a mediated agreement is designed and created by the parties, it is more likely to be effectively carried out without the need for enforcement or further litigation down the road.
Where children are involved, the benefits of mediation are even more significant. The process provides a forum for parties to thoughtfully consider and plan for the needs of their children. It also engenders a spirit of collaboration which will form the basis for their continued interaction and reduce the anxiety put on the family moving forward. As parents, even of adult children, the parties’ relationship does not end with divorce. Mediation is a step toward learning to parent cooperatively but apart.
Our Mediation Process
If you are considering mediation, please contact our offices for a no-cost phone consultation. Interested parties will then be offered a joint one-hour consultation during which we will meet in-person, identify the issues in need of mediation and discuss the exchange of information to take place prior to the initial mediation session. In order for parties to make informed decisions, it is imperative that full disclosures are made as to the existence, characterization and valuation of all income, assets and debts (as would be required in traditional divorce proceedings). Should you decide to move forward, we will enter into an Agreement to Mediate and the first mediation session will be scheduled.
A typical mediation will then require a series of 1-2 hour sessions, the specific number of which is dependent on the nature of the dispute and the complexities involved. We encourage parties to consult independent legal counsel and are happy to collaborate with them and other professionals as requested during the mediation process. Unrepresented parties will be instructed to retain a lawyer to review any settlement agreement reached prior to it being finalized so as to ensure that the interests of all parties are adequately protected.
We hope that we will have the opportunity to mediate your dispute and assist you to move forward unencumbered by the personal and financial costs of protracted litigation and discord.