In Jefferson County, your Mediation referral has a date and time for your mediation. If that time does not work for you, please contact me immediately, and we will find a date that does work.
In Berkeley and other counties where the referral does not set your date, that is the first thing we do. I will contact both of you using the phone number on file with the court. If I don’t reach you, I will leave a voice message asking you to confirm your mailing address & asking for your email address. You can call me at (855) 475-0101 with that information, contact me through my web site, or email it to email@example.com.
Once I have contact information for both of you, I use email, if possible, to get a date & time set. Since court-referred mediations occur at the courthouse, we have to set those on weekdays, during court hours—usually 9 to 5.
In all counties, once a date & time are set, I will send you a confirmation letter with your mediation date & time, and an invoice for the mediation fees. I send the letter and invoice by regular mail, and as an email attachment.
Mediation hourly fees are set on a sliding fee schedule by the court. The confirmation letter will show you how the total fee was calculated—I set mediations for two hours, and there is a $25.00 admin fee. Mediation fees get paid in advance, by the date in the confirmation letter.
The invoice you get by email has a link that you can use to pay the fee securely on line, or it can be paid by check or money order sent to the address on the invoice. If you do not have a bank account, and cannot send a check or money order, let me know, and we will make arrangements for payment in advance.
In court-referred mediation, we work on living arrangements and allocation of parenting time for your children, as well as how you will make future decisions about your kids. We also decide how to resolve differences in the future.
As the date for your mediation approaches, you might want to write down things that you want to discuss with me & the other person in the mediation. Mediation is not court, so I don’t take evidence, or decide who is right or wrong, and I do not make decisions for you. In mediation, you and the other person make decisions about your children.
It is sometimes helpful to have information like school calendars at the mediation. If there are other papers you might want to refer to, you are welcome to bring those.
My job as a mediator is to help you have discussions about what arrangements will be best for your children, and to help clarify what is most important for them and you. The important thing about mediation is the the two of you are deciding, not a stranger.
You are not required to reach agreement in mediation, however agreements reached by parents are almost always better for everyone than an arrangement decided by somebody else. Nobody can get to know you & your family as well as you do in the time allotted for a court hearing.
If you have additional questions about your mediation, please email me, or contact me through my web site. I look forward to working with you both!