• Allison Roberts

Thoughts on Being Added to the Court Roster of Mediators for Family Law Cases

I have recently been added to the Court Roster of Mediators for Family Law Cases. I have utilized mediation with great success as an advocate for my clients and I am now eager to act as a mediator to help bring matters to resolution. It is professionally and personally satisfying to help the parties and their attorneys to arrive at the point where they have resolved issues. The 40-hours of training and an additional 5 hours of mentoring have rounded out my training and experience with mediation and have elevated my offerings in this pivotal area of Family Law.

Mediation: Efficient and Becoming More Popular

Presently, mediation is especially helpful and becoming more common because it continues to be difficult to secure trial time. There is a tremendous backlog of matters in Court. Two important factors have contributed to this delay: the lack of Judicial appointments in the recent years before COVID and the logistical challenges during the height of the pandemic. If you are motivated and committed to resolving your matter, mediation is the best alternative.

Mediation is an alternative to traditional litigation. In mediation, we do not rely on or ask a judge to decide issues in your particular case. There is no testimony and no court appearance. Instead, the two parties (often with their attorneys) come to an agreement with the assistance of the neutral mediator. All discussions in mediation are confidential and non-binding until all the terms are officially written into a comprehensive agreement and accepted by both parties.

The Role of a Mediator

As the mediator, I am here not to pronounce who is right or who is wrong; I am here to guide both parties during the decision-making process, based on my detailed understanding and practical experience with the law. A mediator has a formal obligation to both parties to remain neutral. Part of our neutrality is the expectation of the Court and our training to be impartial. The other part of our neutrality is, as the saying goes, we “ have no dog in the fight".

The role of the mediator is to empower the parties to reach an agreement that works for both parties. No agreement is perfect, that is the nature of compromise, but there is a significant value (financial and emotional) to self-determination. Mediation gives the parties and the attorneys the freedom to be creative. There is hardly a case that won’t benefit from mediation at some point, whether it is before either party files a Complaint for Divorce or as a court hearing approaches, mediation can be utilized as a tool to avoid going to court.

If you have any questions, we are here to answer them. Please contact us at info@amrlawyers.com or call 908-237-3098.

See more practical tips about mediation in our previous blog article Divorce: The 3 Ways to Utilize Mediation

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