Jersey City Mediation Attorney
Is Mediation Mandatory in New Jersey?
Mediation and arbitration are alternative dispute techniques that enable divorcing parties to avoid the time and expense of a divorce court battle. Many states now require some form of mediation to allow divorcing parties the opportunity to reach a settlement without court involvement.
New Jersey mandates mediation for divorcing couples. There are three different programs that are designed to help parties come to an agreement without going to court. The type of mediation required depends on the specific situation, such as whether there are children involved and if disputes exist regarding custody.
The mediation programs in New Jersey include:
Matrimonial Early Settlement Panel (MESP)– This program is designed to resolve disputes that revolve around the distribution of marital property. It is not used for custody issues.
Parent Education Program (PEP)– When a divorcing couple has children, they are required to attend this program. The seminar is about three hours long and educates parents about the custody mediation process.
Custody Mediation– After attending a PEP seminar, parents are scheduled for a custody mediation. During this process, the mediator will work with the parties to create a parenting plan that is agreeable to both parties.
You or your Jersey City mediation attorney can request further mediation to attempt to resolve issues that were not resolved in regards to marital property if you still think that the process could be beneficial. Our Jersey City mediation attorney can explain the options that are available to you.
How to Prepare for Mediation
Whether your mediation session is for divorce or another family law matter, there are several ways that you can better prepare yourself. Preparation is key to finding success, as it helps speed along the process, and it can help build credibility with your presented arguments.
Here are a few recommendations to help you prepare:
- Create a list of questions or concerns for your mediator
- Create a parenting plan to present
- Be prepared to actively listen to the other side
- Expect the unexpected – there may be issues that surface that you were unaware of
- If applicable, discuss all legal issues and terms with your attorney prior to your session
- Be prepared to negotiate and compromise
Understanding Arbitration in New Jersey
Arbitration is used to resolve disputes without going to court. The process involves the parties presenting their cases to a third party arbitrator. The arbitrator is impartial and will decide the issues of the case without going to court. The best way to determine the method that is right for you is to discuss your situation with a lawyer.
Lori Cieckiewicz, ESQ, our Jersey City mediation and arbitration lawyer has a reputation for settling cases quickly and positively for our clients. Lori will work with you to obtain a favorable settlement while avoiding trial. There are differences between the processes of mediation and arbitration.