Most mediation includes the consideration of these steps, in an order that makes sense in your situation:

Setting the Framework, Committing to Process, Temporary Arrangements

  • Review and understand the spectrum of process options.
  • Consider and commit to the core principles of mediation and share your goals and interests with one another and the mediator.
  • Discuss the concept of a mediation team and choose additional professionals to work with you if and as needed, and choose the mediation format (types of mediation) that will work best for you
  • Temporary arrangements and/or time-sensitive issues are discussed as soon as necessary and new arrangements established.

Information Gathering

  • Gather information to assist you, your partner and your mediator in developing a creative and appropriate settlement. This includes the financial “Disclosure” required by law.
  • All relevant information and documentation is voluntarily and promptly shared. The factual, legal and emotional background is developed so that the issues can be identified.

Brainstorming and Option Development 

  • Options are brainstormed for each issue.
  • Options are compared against the both parties’ interests and prioritized.

Negotiating and Choosing Solutions

  • Settlement ideas are created, discussed and organized into settlement proposals, or “packages”.
  • Settlement packages are modified and refined to create resolution.

Memorializing and Implementing Your Agreement

  • Written documentation of the agreement and required court forms are prepared signed and submitted to the court.
  • The mediation process is debriefed and an implementation plan is developed and carried out.

Follow Up, if Needed

  • Follow-up with parties to determine if any future changes are needed.
  • The mediator can be consulted again to negotiate, memorialize and implement the agreed upon changes.