We are an expert all concerns family mediation service dedicated to assisting separating couples exercise future arrangements for kids, home and financial resources for Legal and private Help customers. We evaluate for Legal Aid– assessment complimentary. Inquire about totally free meetings for private clients.

National Family Mediation Service helps you make you own choices about what is best for you and your family in future without going to court. We will help you improve communication, resolve your conflicts and reach a practical, lasting option rapidly, compassionately and cost-effectively.

Our exceptional team of family mediators are trained to guide you through the procedure to decrease the cost, distress and hold-up so typically connected with separation and divorce.

family Mediation Process

The Essentials of Family Mediation


Mediation is a voluntary, consensual process that utilizes a skilled, neutral third party to facilitate the negotiation of disputes. The goal is to reach a binding settlement contract.


” Generally … almost any civil dispute is open to mediation.”
Virginia Supreme Court Chief Justice Carrico, 3/27/95


The use of mediation is increasing drastically throughout the country. The benefits of mediation are recognized to be numerous and considerable.

  • Control by celebrations– The celebrations remain in charge of the result.
  • Chance for much better outcomes– The celebrations understand their disagreement better than any court or jury could.
  • Effective– Around 85% of cases handled by The National Family Mediation Service reach settlement.
  • Greater compliance– Parties are most likely to adhere to a mediated outcome than with a judgment or an arbitration award.
  • Minimized time and expense– Mediation can be concluded in a single day or in a series of much shorter sessions over a time period picked by the parties.
  • Voluntary, consensual process– The parties remain in control. The result is determined by the parties.
  • Protected, improved relationships between parties– Protecting or enhancing relationships is particularly important in family cases where the parties may have ongoing dealings with each other or with children or other relative.
  • Reduced stress and interruptions to continuous activities.
  • Enhanced relationships and abilities– Mediation helps parties in future settlements and conflict resolution.


There are numerous ways to get to mediation.

  1. Most often, one celebration decides it would be handy to deal with the disagreement through mediation and recommends mediation to the other party.
  2. In pending lawsuits, the court typically recommends or even orders that the parties think about mediation. A personnel person will offer information about the mediation process and will answer any questions the celebrations or their attorneys might have.


Once the parties have accepted mediate, The National Family Mediation Service deals with the parties or their counsel to determine which of its mediators would be best suited to serve. The personnel person handling the case may suggest one or more arbitrators based on the problems or profile of the case, although the parties or counsel might ask for a particular mediator as well.

The standard role of a mediator is not to render a decision but to assist in a negotiation and help the celebrations in clarifying their problems and solving them. An extra function of a mediator might be to evaluate the issues in dispute if the celebrations pick. These roles need to be considered in picking a mediator. Other aspects to be considered involve the individual characteristics of the mediator:

  • Neutrality
  • Stability
  • Interpersonal abilities
  • Experience
  • Training
  • Subject expertise, if the parties want assessment of the concerns
  • Accessibility


Prior to the mediation takes place, a staff individual will speak with the parties or their legal representatives to make sure that the case is appropriate for mediation, and to discuss who will be present, the format of mediation, and costs. In most cases, the mediator will carry out a teleconference with the parties and/or their legal representatives prior to the mediation. This call is an opportunity to ask additional concerns and to share any info that might be important in moving the procedure forward. It would be gone over during this call if the mediator needs any written information prior to the mediation.


Attorneys have an important role to play in guaranteeing that parties have a clear understanding of their legal rights and responsibilities as they go through the mediation process. The mediated contract that parties reach is only as strong as the info on which it is based, and it is critical that parties be well informed and plainly advised about the ramifications of the choices they are making.


The mediator first discusses the process to be used and develops the ground rules. All those in attendance indication a mediation contract which, among other things, binds them to rigorous confidentiality.

One celebration provides his or her view of the dispute. The other party is then offered a chance to provide his or her view of the case.

With the help of the mediator, the celebrations and their counsel then start negotiations. The mediator helps the celebrations focus on identifying the real issues and resolving them.

While the legal elements of the family dispute are certainly relevant in the settlement, possible solutions might include extra-legal issues also. These non-legal matters are typically at the heart of the disagreement, yet they might not be sufficiently addressed in a courtroom.

The negotiations continue up until effectively finished or up until the celebrations decide that they are not able to reach a resolution. The analytical may take place in personal personal sessions (” caucuses”) in between each party and the mediator, with counsel, and may also occur over more than one session.

Depending on the needs of the celebrations, family mediations might either be arranged to be finished in one day or in two- to three-hour sessions. Often, it is chosen in the preliminary session that additional info requires to be gathered or that the parties need time beyond the mediation to complete certain jobs or to try to find other possible options to a specific problem. Because case, the participants merely schedule a subsequent session to give them time to gather the essential information.

Child between parents happy

A settlement agreement is minimized to writing when the parties reach arrangement. If concerns are raised throughout the legal evaluation, the parties can agree to return to mediation to discuss the concerns and settle the contract, if necessary.

The essential style of The National Family Mediation Service is assistance. This includes the personal abilities of a mediator used to clarify interests, identify concerns, test the benefit of positions, and typically to assist the parties in approaching common ground. A mediator might offer legal info including the neutral evaluation of problems. Such assessment is provided only where (1) the celebrations request it; (2) the mediator thinks that the requested examination is required and proper; (3) the mediator is qualified to provide such assessment; (4) there is sufficient info on which to base such assessment; and (5) such evaluation is provided in reasonably broad and qualified terms. As the mediation proceeds, the requirements of the parties might change, and the nature of the services offered might also change, as the celebrations may request.

The National Family Mediation Service do not give other or legal professional recommendations. They do not forecast particular outcomes to legal disagreements. While they may recommend possible options by which to resolve a conflict, they do not suggest any specific solution because the ultimate choice is made by the parties.

The parties and their counsel are well served by appropriate preparation, whether the lawyer will be taking part in the actual mediation or not. Both the celebration and attorney ought to have:

  • A practical view of the issues in the disagreement.
  • A clear understanding of his or her goals and requirements.
  • A preliminary presentation of his/her perspective.
  • A desire to jeopardize.

In addition, they need to be prepared to:

  • Listen
  • Examine
  • Explore options to be thought about in the general session and in caucuses.
  • Check out and evaluate various settlement circumstances.
  • Discover ways to help the other celebration to be versatile on important issues.
  • Check out a resolution
  • Make a decision

The crucial to that outcome is that the decision maker in mediation is not a judge, the lawyers, or the mediator– the decision makers are the celebrations, with the advice and support of counsel. Thus, the most efficient approach to mediation is most likely to be based on a desire to reach an excellent resolution and end the conflict, rather than the combative style that might have defined earlier interactions between the celebrations and their counsel.

Normally, the interaction taking place within the mediation procedure is personal. This motivates a full exchange of truths, sensations and views.

Before the mediation occurs, a personnel individual will speak with the celebrations or their lawyers to make sure that the case is proper for mediation, and to discuss who will be present, the format of mediation, and expenses. The mediator will carry out a conference call with the celebrations and/or their lawyers prior to the mediation. The mediated agreement that parties reach is only as strong as the information on which it is based, and it is crucial that celebrations be well notified and plainly encouraged about the implications of the choices they are making.

As the mediation proceeds, the needs of the celebrations might change, and the nature of the services supplied may similarly change, as the celebrations may request.

The crucial to that result is that the decision maker in mediation is not a judge, the lawyers, or the mediator– the choice makers are the celebrations, with the recommendations and assistance of counsel.

National Family Mediation Service Videos
Learn More About MEDIATION From WikiPedia
Mediation is a “party-centered” procedure in that it is concentrated largely upon the needs, legal rights, and also rate of interests of the celebrations. Mediation, as used in regulation, is a type of alternate disagreement resolution settling conflicts between 2 or even more parties with concrete effects. Commonly, a 3rd event, the mediator, aids the events to discuss a settlement.

Mediation is a “party-centered” procedure in that it is concentrated mainly upon the requirements, civil liberties, as well as rate of interests of the events. Mediation, as used in legislation, is a kind of alternate dispute resolution fixing conflicts in between 2 or more celebrations with concrete impacts. Generally, a third party, the mediator, helps the events to work out a negotiation.

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