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Preparing for Mediation in Your Oregon Divorce or Family Law Case

Updated: Dec 10, 2023

The mediator is a neutral party to facilitate agreement

Once both parties have filed their petition and response with the court, you and the other parent will be required to attend mediation. Mediation usually begins once both of you have completed the mandatory parenting class. Mediation is a procedure in which both parents speak with a neutral third-party hired by the court to help you reach an agreement on custody and to set an appropriate parenting schedule. The mediator is not going to discuss financial issues, give legal advice, or provide therapy.

Preparation Before Mediation Will Yield Better Results for You

The more prepared you are during mediation often dictates how successful it will be. Ways to increase your success with mediation is to spend time with our office talking about what should and should not be asked for in mediation before entering the process. Additionally, together we can create a full comprehensive parenting time plan. Completing a comprehensive parenting time plan is powerful because we go over all the most typical provisions found in a good parenting time plan and modify them to what you believe is in the best interest of the children and therefore for the court to adopt in a final general judgment that will be court enforceable.

What to Expect When You First Start Mediation

The first step for mediation is to attend the mediation orientation. During Covid, many courts have waived the orientation. The orientation was to complete a short questionnaire and determine who is going to be your mediator. Most mediators have a background in law, conflict resolution, or mental health with additional training in mediation. Some counties do not require mediation and some cases may have the mediation requirement waived if there is domestic violence involved between the parties. What is discussed during mediation is confidential and the mediator is bound by professional and legal rules.

Each county is different in how many hours they allow for mediation. Usually there is a certain amount that is allotted for free as part of the county program. The judge has authority to allow more if the parties believe it will be beneficial to achieving a settlement. Some counties do not have allotted free hours or free after the initial free hours are spent.

Mediation Can Have a Lasting Effect on Your Divorce or Family Law Case

As mentioned above, being prepared before and during mediation is how to be most successful. Doing so will result in a partially or fully mediated parenting time agreement which will save you money in the long run because it eliminates the need for a final trial (the most expensive part of any case) or reduces the amount of issues at a final trial.

Should You Talk With an Attorney First?

Navigating through the family law process can be complicated and have negative consequences if not done correctly. Doing the process correctly is crucial to achieving your desired results without wasting time and money. It’s important you talk with an attorney to help guide you through the process, advise you of your options, and explain the advantages and disadvantages of your actions you take in divorce, custody, or family law case in Oregon. Contact us at Navigate Legal Services today by calling (503) 300-1990.

Discuss your case with an Oregon attorney today. We serve clients all throughout Oregon. Contact us at Navigate Legal Services today by calling (503) 300-1990.


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