- Contesting Settlement Issues
If the parties cannot reach agreement and some matters remain unsettled, a trial will be necessary. In this event, each party will present their case in court and a judge will make a final decision on the issues.
- What is Mediation in North Carolina?
Mediation is a guided negotiation which helps separated or divorcing spouses reach a fair settlement without having to endure a trial. It is conducted in an informal, private setting instead of in a courtroom. The mediator is an objective neutral third party trained to facilitate productive conversations and move the ex-spouses toward resolving their issues. Mediators in North Carolina must be certified if the mediation is court-ordered.
- Family Law Courts in North Carolina
Certain counties in the state have been designated as “family law courts.” These counties are given special funding which provides for child custody mediators, special courts for family cases, and certified mediators for issues of support and property distribution.
- Types of Family Law Court Mediations
There are generally two types of mediation associated with North Carolina family law cases – family court custody mediation and mediation for support and property issues.
- What are the Benefits of Mediation?
Mediation is particularly beneficial to divorcing couples who are willing to work amicably toward a fair settlement and who are ready to compromise when necessary. Since mediations are less formal than trials, the meeting(s) can be more easily arranged to accommodate all the parties’ schedules. Negotiations can progress in a far less stressful atmosphere than that of a trial.
- What Happens in a Mediation Conference?
Usually, the mediator will begin the meeting by explaining the mediation process. Both parties can then explain their positions on the issues. Negotiation between the two parties then begins with the mediator navigating the process. He or she will attempt to introduce reason into the conversation if it is missing and will encourage each party to see the situation from the other party’s side. The mediator will not make judgements or decisions but will act much like a referee or guide.