Simply put, mediation works. The vast majority of cases can be resolved outside of court if the parties are prepared to focus on positive solutions, rather than assigning blame. In most cases, mediation is much more cost effective than going to court. In divorce and custody matters, a cooperative resolution of disputes is highly desirable. Family law cases are not a matter of winning or losing. The goal should be that disputes are resolved fairly for all parties, including children. I will strive to help you develop realistic objectives and attempt to attain them with the least injury to your family. Research has shown that people are more likely to abide by their own promises than by an outcome imposed on them by a court. In matters as complicated as child custody and parenting time, the parties may be better able than the court to come up with a resolution that addresses their individual values and needs. This kind of agreement maximizes the values and priorities of the parties. A court-imposed resolution may, instead, be based on legal principles that may seem impractical or unfair within the context of your family. A voluntary agreement reached through mediation will establish a positive tone for continuing post-divorce family relations by avoiding continued trips to the courthouse. It may also be less costly financially than a trial. Parents who litigate their custody disputes are much more likely to believe that the process had a detrimental effect on post-divorce relations than parents whose custody or support disputes are settled.
© 2021 Thomas C. Kates, Attorney and Mediator