Mediation is a non-binding settlement discussion. This is referred to as an alternative dispute resolution, meaning it is a way for the parties to meet with a third party and reach an agreement as opposed to conducting an expensive and drawn out trial. Typically, a third party attorney is selected by the parties' attorneys or appointed by the judge to help settle the case. Each party's attorney would submit a written summary of the facts and law associated with the case as well as his or her suggestion on how the issues should be resolved.
The mediator would review those summaries in advance and then schedule a mediation conference in which all parties and their attorneys would attend. The parties would either meet in the same room, or the mediator would go from office to office getting each side's position on the facts and law involved. The mediator would attempt to reach an agreement by informing the parties how the law typically works and what he or she believes the judge is likely to do. In cases where the parties still cannot reach an agreement, it is common for the mediator to issue a recommendation on how the case should be resolved.
Mediation (as opposed to arbitration) is non-binding, meaning the mediator's recommendations are just a suggestion which the parties can follow or not. The next step after an unsuccessful mediation would be to go to trial. If mediation is successful, it is common for the settlement of the parties to either be typed out and signed or recorded so as to make that settlement binding. This is done so that neither party can change his or her mind down the road. The purpose of this is to bring finality to the matter.
Our Attorneys Get Involved in the Mediation Process
All cases at A.D.A.M are started by ensuring the relevant facts are available and attempts are made to settle disputed issues with the other party's attorney. Should that fail, it is common to attempt mediation to bring the parties together and avoid trial. In the event mediation is successful, an attorney will ensure the mediation agreement addresses all issues and can be reduced to a Judgment of Divorce, legal separation, or custody order without further litigation.
About ADAM (American Divorce Association for Men)
The American Divorce Association for Men (ADAM) is a group of highly qualified attorneys who advocate for men’s rights in all aspects of family law. Since 1988, ADAM has been aggressive, diligent, and uncompromising when representing their clients. A team of compassionate and skilled family law attorneys, ADAM is dedicated to being Michigan’s leading divorce attorneys for men. If you're seeking a divorce lawyer or child custody attorney, contact ADAM today.