If you are considering a divorce, a legal separation, or have child custody or property disputes, Parler & Wobber offers a relaxed, informal atmosphere allowing durable settlements which can be obtained more quickly and which are less costly than traditional litigation. We provide mediation services for individuals in new cases, and by lawyer referral when the matter is filed with the court but cannot be resolved between the parties.
A mediator is not an advocate for either party but rather the mediator listens, helps guide the process and assists the parties to stay focused on the issues. Often we work with coaches and child specialists, who help the parties work through emotional and child access issues, so that both parties can come to the mediation table to discuss their issues in a respectful peaceful manner, in order to resolve their disputes cost-effectively. Our goal is for you to reach a reasonable and fair resolution with your spouse or partner, one that which meets your needs, and that of your family. Mediation is a voluntary process, and both Parties must be willing to enter into mediation.
Attorney Kathleen Wobber has more than 20 years experience in assisting families to resolve their disputes respectfully. Here is what you can expect in a mediation:
Mediation Preparation - Once you and your partner have decided to mediate, you will be provided with a questionnaire, which will assist Kathleen in narrowing the issues to be mediated. Kathleen will review the information in advance of your initial appointment, which saves you time and money during mediation.
Initial Appointment - During the first session, Kathleen will explain the mediation process in detail and discuss your goals and expectations. If you have additional questions that need to be addressed independently, she will set a time to discuss with you one on one. All mediation sessions are governed by an agenda, which keeps the parties on track and alerts the parties of issues before they enter a mediation session.
Setting the Ground Rules - Although this is not an official court proceeding, mediation does include several legally enforceable ground rules, including the confidential nature of the meetings, full disclosure of all financial information, and the right to consult with your own attorney during the mediation process.
Reaching an Agreement - After the initial appointment, you will continue to meet with Kathleen on a periodic basis until a final agreement is reached. You can expect that you will have homework to accomplish, which will assist you in resolving factual disputes and in considering your disputes. Depending on how you interact and communicate, this could take place in the same room, or separate rooms. Common issues discussed in mediation include child custody, parenting time (visitation), child support, asset and debt division, and spousal support. The parties reach "mini-agreements" as we go along, helping the parties to reduce the number of issues until all issues have been addressed.
Legal Information -Kathleen's role is to present the legal information to both parties when requested, so that they may make informed, educated decisions. As a neutral party, she will not offer legal advice to one party, she will not make any decisions for you and she will not pressure you to agree with any proposal. She will assist you in reviewing your various options so that you may make sound decisions about your own future.
The Final Agreement - Once an agreement is reached, Kathleen will draft a separation agreement. This agreement sets forth the rights and duties of the parties and puts the parties in a position so that they may move forward with their lives, even if they are not ready for a final divorce. Prior to signing the agreement, both parties retain the right to take the agreement to an attorney for a final review.
Parler & Wobber offers a free 30 minute phone consultation to discuss process option and whether mediation is right for your family. Feel free to contact Kathleen if you have any questions about the mediation process.