We are a professional all problems family mediation service dedicated to assisting separating couples exercise future arrangements for children, property and financial resources for Personal and Legal Aid clients. We evaluate for Legal Aid– assessment free. Ask about free conferences for personal customers.

National Family Mediation Service helps you make you own choices about what is best for you and your family in future without litigating. We will assist you improve communication, fix your disputes and reach a workable, lasting solution rapidly, compassionately and cost-effectively.

Our outstanding team of family arbitrators are trained to guide you through the procedure to lessen the cost, distress and hold-up so frequently associated with separation and divorce.

family Mediation Process

The Essentials of Family Mediation


Mediation is a voluntary, consensual procedure that utilizes a trained, neutral 3rd party to facilitate the negotiation of disagreements. The objective is to reach a binding settlement arrangement.


” Usually … nearly any civil conflict is open to mediation.”
Virginia Supreme Court Chief Justice Carrico, 3/27/95


Making use of mediation is increasing dramatically across the nation. The advantages of mediation are acknowledged to be many and substantial.

  • Control by parties– The celebrations remain in charge of the outcome.
  • Opportunity for better outcomes– The parties understand their dispute better than any court or jury could.
  • Efficient– Approximately 85% of cases managed by The National Family Mediation Service reach settlement.
  • Greater compliance– Parties are most likely to adhere to a mediated outcome than with an arbitration or a judgment award.
  • Reduced 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 celebrations.
  • Voluntary, consensual process– The parties remain in control. The result is figured out by the parties.
  • Protected, improved relationships between celebrations– Protecting or improving relationships is particularly crucial in family cases where the parties may have ongoing transactions with each other or with children or other relative.
  • Decreased stress and interruptions to continuous activities.
  • Improved skills and relationships– Mediation helps celebrations in future settlements and conflict resolution.


There are numerous methods to get to mediation.

  1. Frequently, one celebration chooses it would be helpful to resolve the disagreement through mediation and recommends mediation to the other celebration.
  2. In pending litigation, the court often recommends or even orders that the celebrations consider mediation. A staff person will offer info about the mediation process and will address any concerns the celebrations or their lawyers may have.


When the celebrations have actually consented to mediate, The National Family Mediation Service works with the celebrations or their counsel to identify which of its arbitrators would be finest matched to serve. The staff person handling the case might suggest one or more arbitrators based on the issues or profile of the case, although the parties or counsel may request a specific mediator.

The standard function of a mediator is not to render a choice however to help with a settlement and assist the celebrations in clarifying their concerns and fixing them. If the celebrations choose, an additional role of a mediator might be to evaluate the concerns in dispute. These functions need to be thought about in selecting a mediator. Other aspects to be considered involve the specific characteristics of the mediator:

  • Neutrality
  • Stability
  • Interpersonal abilities
  • Experience
  • Training
  • Topic competence, if the celebrations desire examination of the issues
  • Schedule


Before the mediation happens, a personnel person will speak with the celebrations or their attorneys 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 conduct a conference call with the parties and/or their legal representatives prior to the mediation.


At the mediation itself, celebrations can have their attorneys present or they can choose to do so themselves. Lawyers have a critical role to play in making sure that parties have a clear understanding of their legal rights and responsibilities as they go through the mediation process. Conciliators are not permitted to offer legal suggestions and are morally and statutorily bound to make it clear to the celebrations who select to moderate that they must depend on legal advice. The mediated agreement that parties reach is only as strong as the info on which it is based, and it is critical that celebrations be well informed and clearly advised about the ramifications of the choices they are making.


The mediator initially describes the procedure to be made use of and develops the guideline. All those in attendance indication a mediation arrangement which, to name a few things, binds them to strict confidentiality.

One party presents his or her view of the conflict. The other party is then offered an opportunity to provide his or her view of the case.

With the help of the mediator, the parties and their counsel then initiate settlements. The mediator assists the parties concentrate on recognizing the real issues and addressing them.

While the legal aspects of the family dispute are definitely appropriate in the negotiation, possible solutions might involve extra-legal problems as well. These non-legal matters are often at the heart of the conflict, yet they may not be properly dealt with in a courtroom.

The negotiations continue until effectively completed or up until the parties choose that they are not able to reach a resolution. The problem-solving may occur in personal personal sessions (” caucuses”) in between each celebration and the mediator, with counsel, and may also take place over more than one session.

Depending on the needs of the parties, family mediations may either be set up to be completed in one day or in 2- to three-hour sessions. Typically, it is decided in the preliminary session that additional details requires to be collected or that the parties need time outside of the mediation to complete certain tasks or to look for other possible services to a particular concern. In that case, the participants just arrange a subsequent session to provide time to gather the required data.

Child between parents happy

A settlement contract is decreased to writing when the parties reach agreement. The attorneys prepare the terms of the agreement. If concerns are raised throughout the legal review, the celebrations can consent to return to mediation to talk about the issues and complete the contract, if required. Or they can waive this legal review and consent to a binding contract in the mediation. Agreements affecting the rights of kids may undergo continuous judicial review.

Such examination is supplied only where (1) the celebrations request it; (2) the mediator believes that the asked for assessment is essential and appropriate; (3) the mediator is qualified to give such examination; (4) there is enough details on which to base such assessment; and (5) such evaluation is offered in reasonably broad and qualified terms. As the mediation profits, the requirements of the parties may change, and the nature of the services supplied may similarly change, as the celebrations might ask for.

The National Family Mediation Service do not provide legal or other expert advice. They do not forecast particular outcomes to legal conflicts. While they may suggest possible options by which to solve a conflict, they do not recommend any specific service given that the supreme decision is made by the celebrations.

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

  • A realistic view of the concerns in the dispute.
  • A clear understanding of his/her objectives and needs.
  • An initial presentation of his/her viewpoint.
  • A desire to compromise.

In addition, they ought to be prepared to:

  • Listen
  • Assess
  • Explore options to be thought about in the basic session and in caucuses.
  • Explore and assess various settlement situations.
  • Find methods to help the other celebration to be flexible on vital concerns.
  • Explore a resolution
  • Make a decision

Being successful means getting to the very best possible outcome with the lowest possible cost– both psychological and financial. The key to that result is that the choice maker in mediation is not a judge, the attorneys, or the mediator– the choice makers are the celebrations, with the guidance and assistance of counsel. Thus, the most efficient method to mediation is most likely to be based upon a desire to reach a good resolution and end the dispute, rather than the combative style that might have characterized previously interactions in between the celebrations and their counsel. Being open to the possibility of crafting an innovative service implies that the outcome may be something that both parties can deal with more readily than if the result were troubled them.

Typically, the interaction occurring within the mediation procedure is personal. This encourages a complete exchange of views, facts and sensations.

Before the mediation takes place, a staff person will speak with the celebrations or their legal representatives to make sure that the case is suitable for mediation, and to discuss who will be present, the format of mediation, and costs. The mediator will conduct a conference call with the parties and/or their lawyers prior to the mediation. The mediated arrangement that parties reach is just as strong as the details on which it is based, and it is critical that celebrations be well informed and clearly encouraged about the ramifications of the decisions they are making.

As the mediation proceeds, the needs of the celebrations may change, and the nature of the services provided may similarly alter, as the parties may request.

The key to that outcome is that the decision maker in mediation is not a judge, the legal representatives, or the mediator– the decision makers are the parties, with the recommendations and assistance of counsel.

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Learn More About MEDIATION From WikiPedia

Mediation is a structured, interactive process where an impartial third party assists disputing parties in resolving conflict through the use of specialized communication and negotiation techniques. All participants in mediation are encouraged to actively participate in the process. Mediation is a “party-centered” process in that it is focused primarily upon the needs, rights, and interests of the parties. The mediator uses a wide variety of techniques to guide the process in a constructive direction and to help the parties find their optimal solution. A mediator is facilitative in that she/he manages the interaction between parties and facilitates open communication. Mediation is also evaluative in that the mediator analyzes issues and relevant norms (“reality-testing”), while refraining from providing prescriptive advice to the parties (e.g., “You should do… .”).

Mediation, as used in law, is a form of alternative dispute resolution resolving disputes between two or more parties with concrete effects. Typically, a third party, the mediator, assists the parties to negotiate a settlement. Disputants may mediate disputes in a variety of domains, such as commercial, legal, diplomatic, workplace, community, and family matters.

The term “mediation” broadly refers to any instance in which a third party helps others reach an agreement. More specifically, mediation has a structure, timetable, and dynamics that “ordinary” negotiation lacks. The process is private and confidential, possibly enforced by law. Participation is typically voluntary. The mediator acts as a neutral third party and facilitates rather than directs the process. Mediation is becoming a more peaceful and internationally accepted solution to end the conflict. Mediation can be used to resolve disputes of any magnitude.

The term “mediation,” however, due to language as well as national legal standards and regulations is not identical in content in all countries but rather has specific connotations, and there are some differences between Anglo-Saxon definitions and other countries, especially countries with a civil, statutory law tradition.

Mediators use various techniques to open, or improve, dialogue and empathy between disputants, aiming to help the parties reach an agreement. Much depends on the mediator’s skill and training. As the practice gained popularity, training programs, certifications, and licensing followed, which produced trained and professional mediators committed to the discipline.

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