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Collaborative Law

Mediation is a mandatory part of the divorce process in Florida. It is a valuable process that allows you to express your emotional and legal needs with the help of a mediator outside of the court room. It allows more control over the situation and offers you the opportunity to make these very personal decisions for yourself, rather than have them be made by a judge.

Mediation is also helpful in resolution of issues between domestic partners who do not have access to family courts upon the breakup of a relationship. It can be a very helpful tool to unravel a fairly complicated situation.

If you are considering mediation for your divorce or family matter, contact our Tampa divorce mediation attorney to learn more.

Florida Mediation Process

Because it is mandatory when filing for divorce, Florida divorce court offers mediation services, but people are also able to hire a private mediator. Couples seeking a divorce must make an effort to resolve their disputes before proceeding to litigation. In fact, if a couple has been in litigation for a long time and hasn't been to mediation for six months, the judge will order another attempt to mediate the dispute.

Each party is represented by an attorney during the mediation process, which is conducted before a mediator. The mediator will encourage the parties to discuss their needs with each other. The parties' attorneys will offer guidance regarding the legal consequences of the decisions but the process is more about the parties coming to solutions that work for them.

Agreements reached through mediation are only binding once compiled in writing and signed by each party. Agreements can be temporary or final, partial or full. Usually mediation agreements are written by the mediator, although sometimes the agreed-to terms are written up by one of the attorneys with review by the other.

If all issues are not resolved through mediation, the remaining issues will proceed to family court. A discovery process will be needed to gather information.

Representing Clients In Mediation

With more than 30 years of experience, family law attorney Mary L. Greenwood believes that the worst decisions two people can make together are probably better than what a judge can order. The judge does not know them. Mediation offers the opportunity for people to take control of their divorce and make their own decisions.

Attorney Greenwood has represented clients in mediation and understands that mediation can only work if the parties and their lawyers are willing to cooperate and participate fully in the process. The first step to a successful mediation is preparation. Ms. Greenwood will help you to understand and develop the necessary legal and financial information you will need so that the process of mediation can be meaningful.

Because of her vast experience, Mary L. Greenwood is able to analyze all of the information provided by the other party and recognize if there's missing information. She also understands what it takes to be a parent and the issues arising in divorce when you have children.

Contact our Brandon, Florida, family law mediation lawyer to learn more about the mediation process.