Mediation in general and divorce mediation in particular are not one way procedures that have their techniques defined and laid out in particular patterns. The style of mediation and the direction that your divorce mediation will take depends largely on the course of action that is adopted by the particular mediator.
There are many types that can be adopted, a facilitative approach, a transformational approach, and an evaluative approach. The core of mediation is not rigid; there is vast variety on how mediators use these techniques to make divorce easier for their clients. It is largely down to these distinctions that mediation can be laid down as an art more than a science.
The Importance of The Mediator
In areas of divorce mediation, the importance of the mediator is obvious, who helps guide the process with his or her knowledge of the law, personality traits, and ability to communicate. A mediator can interject their legal opinion, but should not automatically do so unless requested by the parties. A mediator is not a judge so they should not proceed as one. Rather, they are there to help the parties bridge the differences in their positions without imposing their own “decision.”
Primary Role is to Inform and Not Advise
Divorce mediators are not allowed to give legal advice per se because of their role as neutral facilitators and not advocates for either party. However, they can inform the parties about the legal aspects. To inform is to objectively identify some elements of law that have not been or need to be fulfilled in order to make the divorce mediation as success.
During divorce mediation, couples will discuss a range of issues. During such discussions, a mediator’s job is not to interfere or control the discussion unless there is an impasse. They will only look to make sure that the discussion goes on smoothly and heads in the right direction, i.e. resolution.
Gerald A. Maggio is a trained Orange County divorce mediator who has amicably resolved cases many cases out of court, as well as an experienced divorce and family law attorney. Mr. Maggio founded California Divorce Mediators in 2012 with the belief that although “not every marriage can be saved, every family can” and a mission to save families from the financial and emotional distress associated with traditional divorce litigation. California Divorce Mediators is located in Irvine, California, and serves the Orange County area and other counties in California offering divorce mediation, child custody mediation and mediation of other family law matters.