Step 3: Introductory Session with Your Mediator.
Unless otherwise determined, the mediator will initially meet with you and the other party for a session usually lasting two hours or less. The purpose of this meeting is to gather additional information, explain to both of you more specifically about every component needed to assist you, answer any questions you have and provide a road map to begin the process of settlement.
While not mandatory, our experience has taught us that this introductory session is much more efficient and cost effective than meeting "cold" and spending multiple lengthy sessions to complete mediation. We have found that after this first meeting, parties often work many of the issues out on their own, saving themselves considerable expense before reconvening for a more formal mediation session.
Step 4: The Mediation Session.
We will be ready when you are ready to schedule your mediation session. Conducted by our seasoned mediators and practicing family law attorneys, Erica Arena-Camarillo and Lauren Smith, these sessions are handled with professionalism and fairness. Mediations with either Erica or Lauren are easily scheduled via our online portal at www.andyflink.com
Step 5. Drafting and Completing the Process.
Once you and the other party have met with your mediator, covered all the necessary components, and reached an agreement in principle, the drafting phase begins. Our goal is to provide the agreement documents you will need to present to the court (legal forms such as Pleadings cannot be prepared by a mediator). Every so often, this can be completed in one session. Other times, multiple sessions might be required. This is when getting advice from an attorney can be helpful. Keep in mind, however, that an attorney can only represent one party and not both.
Finally... Some Final Notes
The mediation process allows parties to make decisions for themselves, reach an agreement and control the outcome. This is a different model than court, where the judge retains all the control and imposes the decision on you.
We do not require or guarantee that parties will reach an agreement (although in most cases they do). In the event of an impasse, neither party is bound to a set of terms they are not comfortable with. It is important to remember, however, that if an agreement is reached, drafted and subsequently signed, it is binding and enforceable.
We know this information cannot possibly answer all your questions, so feel free to reach out to us at any time. We are here to help, educate and assist as you move towards your new beginning.
Lastly, if either of the parties have questions or concerns at any time during the process, Andy Flink is happy to assist. Unless he is asked to do a substantive project in place of, or in addition to one of our associate mediators, he will provide this service to you at no charge. It is important to our model that he remains in the process from start to finish.
Andy, Erica and Lauren.
Rate and Contact Information:
Andy Flink - $300.00 per hour
Erica Arena-Camarillo - $225.00 per hour
Lauren Smith - $250.00 per hour