Divorce Mediator Role

Our California Divorce Mediators will support your family through the entire separation and divorce process. Our Mediators are experienced in California divorce law. If you are self- representing we will also provide assistance with the documents and forms required by the Court, at a nominal cost.

Divorce can be overwhelming and an enormous emotional strain on the family and extended family, alike. This difficult time is exacerbated by the complexities of dividing community property, from the toaster to the Picasso, and especially awkward where there are family-owned businesses.

We mediate cases whether or not you have a representing attorney.  The role of the mediator is to be neutral.

To assist the parties to:

  • Identify the issues;
  • Establish goals and agenda;
  • Work on transition and interim issues first;
  • Provide a forum for safe and effective discussion;
  • Provide document assistance, and draft memo of understanding/agreements;
  • Plan the division of assets;
  • Manage communications between parties through division process;
  • Mediate until settlement is reached on all issues,
  • Including: property division, support, custody and parenting;
  • Draft Marital Settlement Agreements;
  • Assist with in pro per documents for stipulations and court judgment;
  • Converse with reviewing attorneys to negotiate changes and amendments.

At Private Courts Inc.™ we do not represent either party.  However the mediator can be of further assistance by providing neutral information and resources and even full management of all your divorce needs.  Often mediators do not take on the latter role, however it is our belief that short of this full service, you are often alone and scrambling, not knowing where to go or what to do!

It is often a good idea to have a consulting and reviewing  attorney on hand. We also offer assistance in finding the right attorneys, by providing materials showing guidelines and choices.

The Mediator’s role is to act as a neutral facilitator of discussions to resolve disputes, leading to resolution of your divorce, business and personal property issues.   At Private Courts we work to minimize conflict during your separation and divorce and start out by facilitating transitional arrangements between the participants.

We do not make decisions for you, but rather serve as neutrals to guide the process toward settlement. We will assist in your preparation for mediation by providing forms and lists allowing for full and complete disclosure.   You remain in complete control.  You may choose different levels of participation as wells as different levels of commitment. The choices are always yours.

You are provided with a “Mediation and Fee Agreement” in advance; all mediation and documentation is held to the strictest standard of confidentiality and privacy. We work with divorcing parties represented by attorneys, as well as those who are not.  We provide a forum for full disclosure.  This is an essential precursor to a valid “Marital Settlement Agreement (MSA).

Our process saves many thousands of dollars compared to a purely litigated environment.

During our mediation process we encourage you to seek separate counsel and legal advice from outside attorneys, who can represent you on a consulting basis.  This may only be necessary in certain situations as we want to ensure that you fully understand your options and are empowered in your negotiations.  We do all we can to make sure there is a fair negotiation and that a balance is attained.

We invite you to call us first so we can assist you with referrals to “mediation friendly” attorneys. Mediation is always better served and settlement expedited when both parties possess accurate information.   To help you ascertain your position, we will provide you with resources to further educate yourself or to obtain the separate advice you may need.

Melanie Nathan and other mediators at Private Courts will provide a draft Marital Settlement Agreement and/or any necessary addendums for review by your attorneys. All agreements are non-binding until both parties have signed their acceptance in the presence of a notary.

Equitable resolution will remain within your absolute control and will be cost-effective. Participants are free to end the mediation process at any time. We offer a comfortable and emotionally safe environment in which to explore not only the issues, but also the “what ifs.” We encourage you to call us and see how our unique method can be of service to you.

Our strong child advocacy approach will take care of the best interests of the children.

We also serve the  lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT)  community with divorce, custody, support and domestic partnership mediation in California, nationally and globally.

Mediation provides a forum to support parent’s through their differences as it relates to the many aspects of their children’s lives. Private Courts and all Mediators follow a very strict child advocacy protocol, where the interests of the children are always placed at the fore.  Children benefit from the resolution of conflict. They are harmed by escalating conflict. Do not allow children to be the pawns in your divorce. They deserve their childhood and the only people to protect them are their parents. Parents should never use custody as tool to get back at or alter support obligations. Parents should always work to place the interests of their children first. We offer mediation services to assist in this crucial aspect of your process and where necessary are able to make excellent and time tested referrals.



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