Blog Posts


June 7, 2022
Preparing for a Mediation Appointment

If you need to prepare for a mediation appointment for child custody and visitation, it’s essential to understand your family law case details. That can help you prepare and make sure you can present proper evidence and information during the appointment. Remember that disputes can be standard parts of a child custody case. And, how you handle them will matter for custody and visitation. Here’s what you should consider.

Either Party Can Ask for Mediation

At any time, either parent can arrange for mediation. That’s done by making a request with the court for parenting orders and mentioning an issue in dispute. The court will then schedule a mediation appointment to let the parents work out the child custody and visitation issues. The mediator will work with both parents to help them agree. Sometimes that can be done relatively quickly, and at other times it can’t be done.

Mediation Can Help Avoid Court Proceedings

If parents can agree on child custody and visitation issues through the help of a mediator, they can avoid going to court. The mediation agreement will be written up and will become the court order. That makes it legal and binding, and the court approves it, but either party doesn’t need to appear in court. That’s the most accessible and most convenient outcome for mediation. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work that way, and there are times when parents can’t agree.

The Mediator Can Make Recommendations

Without an agreement reached in mediation, it becomes necessary for the court to decide. The mediator can make recommendations to the court based on the interactions the parents had in mediation. Understanding each parent’s leading issues and concerns is essential for helping the court decide on a custody agreement. The court isn’t obligated to follow the mediator’s recommendations, but courts often do because the mediator was present for parental discussion.

Reach Out to an Attorney Early

If you have concerns in a child custody case and the other parent is requesting mediation, you want to contact an attorney as soon as possible. Many people who need to go to mediation wait until the last minute to contact an attorney, making it more difficult for that attorney to prepare to help them fully. Case planning takes time. The more prepared your attorney is, the better your chance of a successful resolution to your child custody or visitation case.

If you receive a notice for a mediation appointment, get in touch with us at Hartley Lamas Et Al.. Then we can start working with you in developing a case and preparing for your mediation appointment. It’s never too late to contact an attorney for help, but the sooner, the better in a child custody case. Reach out to us today. We’re here to help.

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