Litigation, the process of filing complaints in court to seek a resolution to a dispute, has been around for years, and is not going away. It can be a long and emotionally draining process, not to mention costly. It is important to retain the services of an attorney who understands both the law and the emotional process it can have on a client. More importantly, the attorney you choose should have significant experience in the court process, which includes drafting of motions, depositions, appearances and arguments in court, and trial expertise. Our attorneys possess all of these skills.
Family law is a very delicate matter, and attorneys often forget the necessity of combining basic human virtues such as compassion, kindness, and mutual respect. Along with their expertise, they need to provide solutions that manage to resolve disputes without worsening the relationship any further.
Mediation is being used more often by people as an alternative to litigation. Even in contentious matters, people may benefit from mediation. Almost all issues civil matters can be mediated. Our office does not mediate Restraining Orders.
The process of mediation takes place in a more comfortable and relaxed surrounding, thereby reducing some of the stress that is associated with litigation. It is less costly than most adversarial matters that are litigated. The parties get to choose who will mediate the matter. Mediation sessions happen much faster than the court calendar. For instance, in a contested divorce, it could take 18 months to get a hearing date. It’s confidential. Parties can participate in Mediation and if it is not successful, or if the parties were only able to agree on all of the issues, they are free to litigate the remaining concerns, without having to worry about what was said during the mediation process being brought up in court. Most importantly, the parties are free to determine the outcome of their issues, and have more flexibility in their decisions than a Judge would.
Let’s reiterate, all decisions made, are made by the parties. The mediator acts as a facilitator, a go between for the parties, to reach a settlement on the outstanding issues.
At Damore Law we have trained Mediators available to assist the parties in reaching their own agreement. We provide a cordial atmosphere for parties to talk and discuss the issues between themselves. Our Mediators are also attorneys, who know the law and understand what agreements may be acceptable to a Judge.
There are rules that are required to be followed in a mediation, which rules are established by the Mediator and explained to the parties before the process begins. The cost of the process is usually shared equally by both parties, unless the parties agree otherwise. No retainer is required. The participants pay “as they go”. So it eliminates the stress that comes from needing to come up with a retainer. Additionally, it is confidential.
The process is voluntary. That means both parties must agree to mediate. A party cannot be forced to participate in mediation.
Although it is the client’s decision whether to litigate or mediate any outstanding issues, it is the responsibility of our attorneys to educate our clients on the pros and cons of that decision, based upon their knowledge and expertise.