What is Divorce Mediation
Mediation is an excellent alternative to litigation. It entails the spouses meeting with a neutral third party (the mediator), whose role is to work through the issues with the couple, to try to achieve a “win-win” solution for the parties.
Why Divorce Mediation?
To be honest, litigation is an expensive, extremely lengthy, and unpredictable process.
Even though we have an excellent core of family court judges in Ottawa, we never know whether we will “draw” one of these judges, or even a judge who has experience with family law issues. A “sure win” can easily turn into a very disappointing and puzzling result if your case should end up before a judge who has little experience in family law.
The divorce mediation process can take place over one or more sessions, depending on the number and complexity of the issues.
There are two types of mediation:
- Closed mediation: means that the mediation sessions are confidential, and any information or settlement discussions held within mediation cannot be disclosed in a court proceeding. Additionally and in the event that the mediation process does not result in a settlement, the mediator cannot report on the process nor give his or her recommendation as to how the issues should be resolved.
- Open mediation: any information discussed during mediation can be disclosed in court, and the mediator can draft a report and set out his or her opinion and recommendations as to how the issues should be resolved.
Mediation can occur with or without the parties’ lawyers present. The decision as to whether to involve legal counsel is your choice.
I have conducted many mediation sessions and, in the face of the most difficult and seemingly irresolvable disputes, we have worked very hard at creatively reaching solutions to the issues on which the parties seem to be unable to agree. Focusing not only on “concerns and interests”, but on the “big picture”, I have adopted a direct, straightforward mediation style, drawing upon my experience as a family law lawyer.
If you have any questions about mediation, I invite you to contact me. I would be pleased to answer any questions that you may have.
In the meantime, you can review my Mediation Contract, which both parties sign prior to the start of the mediation process.