Is Mediation Proper for Your Case?
Do you and your spouse/ex-spouse desire to successfully co-parent your children?
Do you want a timely resolution of your legal issues that is not dependent on the court’s docket?
Do you and your spouse/ex-spouse want to customize an individualized custody, or visitation schedule, that is unique to your respective schedules?
Do you want to avoid the adversarial nature of a court hearing?
Depending on the specifics of your case, mediation may be recommended. Mediation is a time-efficient and cost-effective way to resolve legal disputes. Usually, the parties split the cost of mediation. Mediation may be recommended at the beginning stages of the litigation process or after the discovery has been completed. If you and your spouse, or ex-spouse, have young children, mediation is often preferable to litigation because it is less adversarial than litigation, and it promotes communication between the parties. Additionally, conflict or issue resolution through mediation promotes the development of personalized settlements that accommodate the specific needs of the parties (and their children).
In Arkansas, mediators must be trained and certified. The mediator is a neutral third party, who assists with negotiation and resolution of legal issues. The parties are not required to reach a legally binding settlement at mediation; however, a legal binding contractual agreement, or property settlement agreement, may be signed at the close of the mediation session. Further, the parties may resolve a substantial portion of the issues at mediation, but reserve one issue to be decided by the court. For example, in a divorce case, the parties may resolve all property and financial issues at mediation, but may fail to reach an agreement with respect to child custody. Consequently, the issue of custody is reserved for a subsequent court hearing.
If you would like more information regarding mediation, please contact M.W. Law, PLLC to schedule a consultation.