California has a high number of skilled and experienced divorce mediators. Individuals who want to pursue divorce mediation but are not sure how to pick a mediator can use the following process as a basic guide.
The first step is to create a short list of divorce mediators. Divorce mediators can be found through personal referrals, online searches and legal directories such as Avvo or Nolo. Although not required, it is advisable that the divorce mediator also be a family law attorney, so that they have the legal knowledge, background and experience to really be able to answer questions and solve issues during mediation sessions.
The next step is to set up a short call or meeting (in-person or online) with each mediator. The following is a basic list of questions that can be used during the conversation:
- What is your training and experience?
- How do you work with couples that are just getting started in this process?
- What options do you offer?
- How much do your services cost?
- How can I know that you will be neutral and unbiased during the process?
Individuals can add questions relating to specific issues, such as child custody or real estate concerns.
Finally, individuals should have their spouse meet or call each mediator. When both spouses are given a say in selecting the mediator, it can increase the chances that the mediation will end successfully.
Gerald A. Maggio is an experienced Orange County divorce and family law lawyer and family law attorney located in Irvine, California, serving the Orange County and Riverside areas. Mr. Maggio assists clients with legal issues including divorce, legal separation, divorce mediation, child custody, prenuptial agreements, stepparent adoptions, and other family law issues. Mr. Maggio has practiced law in California since 1999, and founded The Maggio Law Firm in 2005, focusing exclusively on divorce and family law matters.