What is mediation or med-arb?
Mediation is negotiation between parties facilitated by a neutral mediator with the goal of resolving all concerns and issues. Studies have shown that parties to a family law dispute are much more satisfied with the outcome if they mediate their own case than if they have a court decide the outcome. In mediation, the parties themselves retain control, rather than relinquishing decision-making to a judge. Sometimes people cannot resolve issues themselves and just want someone else to decide. However, they still may want to keep the matter out of court. In that case, parties may request that the mediator become an arbitrator, or decision-maker, to resolve the issue. This is called “med-arb.” Both mediation and med-arb are confidential processes, meaning that the negotiations cannot be discussed in court, and the mediator cannot discuss the matter with anyone else.
A Parent-Coordinator/Decision-Maker (PC-DM) is a court appointed neutral professional to assist parents in implementing their parenting plans.
Why should we select Ms. Bryant?
Susan has many years experience as a mental health counselor and as an attorney. She brings these formidable “people-skills” to help parties resolve their disputes in an amicable and equitable way. As an attorney, she is up-to-date on the latest rules and cases governing family law disputes. She is active in an interdisciplinary organization to stay abreast of the latest psychological research on divorcing or separating families, domestic violence, child development, alcohol and drug addictions, etc. She has also completed 40 hours of mediation training and is a member of the Boulder Alternative Dispute Resolution section of the Boulder Bar Association.
How much will it cost?
Her hourly rate is $120 if parties attend the mediation without lawyers. With attorneys present, the hourly rate is $150. Usually parties split the cost equally. For med-arb and decision-making roles, Susan charges $200 per hour.
How long will it take?
Often parties can resolve all issues pertaining to their divorce over 4-6 hours of mediation. Usually appointments are scheduled for 2-3 hours, either in the morning or afternoon at Susan’s office. Parties will usually meet jointly, but there are separate conference rooms if needed.
What should I do before we come in?
Parties should gather together relevant financial information, preferably having already prepared their Sworn Financial Statements, and bring these documents to the session. For those where parenting issues are disputed, Susan strongly urges both parents to review the impact of separation on children by logging on to www.uptoparents.org (for married parents) or www.proudtoparent.org (for never married parents). Optimally, both parents will bring their commitments to their child(ren) to the mediation for discussion.
How can I make an appointment?
Call 303-651-7108 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to receive a copy of Susan’s mediation agreement and resume, and to schedule an appointment.