Family Law Mediation Services in Tigard
A Divorce Alternative for Residents of Beaverton, Lake Oswego & the Surrounding Areas in Oregon
At Evans & Hubbard Attorneys at Law, we firmly believe that there is more than one way to find solutions. Sometimes, we hire mediators to work with our attorneys and our clients. We also offer mediation services to people who want to explore coming to their own solutions, rather than leaving the outcome to a judge.
What Is Mediation?
Mediation is a process where people talk to a neutral third party about the issues they are in disagreement about, and hopefully come up with a solution that works for everyone. Mediation can be done with or without attorneys.
Types of Mediators
There are different types of mediators:
- Collaborative mediators help parties when they agree not to litigate. If an agreement is not reached, the process has to start completely from scratch.
- Mediators trained in social work have knowledge about child development and about how different kinds of parenting plans can work.
- Retired judges can mediate, as they have the experience of people litigating in front of them, know what factors they would have considered as a judge in that county, and have a unique authority because they are a retired judge.
Private attorneys can also mediate, and there are private attorneys who are litigators as well as mediators. Lawyers who also litigate can have a distinct advantage; because they represent clients in divorces in multiple counties with multiple judges, they know the issues, they are current on the procedures and caselaw, they have experience in knowing how to negotiate, and know how to come up with solutions that would be able to work for both parties, including solutions that the parties might not have considered themselves. Attorneys are also knowledgeable about the range of possibilities and the range of potential judicial outcomes across different counties and judges.
Mediation Is Not Binding
If the parties agree to the mediation process, or it is mandated by court rules, but they cannot reach an agreement, then the parties walk away and their case proceeds to court. The benefit to mediation is that the parties are more in control of what options are considered and what works best for them and their children.
Mediation also does a better job of preserving a working relationship with the other parent. When parties litigate, there is formal testimony and presentation of evidence and outside witnesses, all of which can result in emotional trauma from the experience of having someone that you once loved testify about what a horrible person you are. Often people talk about being traumatized by the process which does not allow time to reflect or think, but often only to react, because the pace of litigation can go quickly and as facts change, results change. In litigation, someone else is making the decision for you. Sometimes there isn’t any other option. Good people can disagree in good faith, and you need a judge to decide. But if both parties are willing to go into mediation in good faith, both parties are usually happier with the result, and the agreements tend to last longer before a modification is necessary.
At Evans & Hubbard Attorneys at Law, all of our attorneys have extensive experience in litigation, negotiation, and mediation. If you want an alternative to litigation, or you are required by court rules to mediate before you litigate, our Tigard mediators can help you look for creative solutions.
Contact us today to learn more about your legal options.