Mediation in California is a form of alternative dispute resolution, or ADR, facilitated by a mediator. This allows parents going through child custody and visitation dispute an opportunity to resolve their disagreements without a litigated hearing. As pointed out in Family Code 3170, mediation is a mandatory process in California that must occur before a contested issue regarding custody and visitation is heard in a litigated hearing. Mediation has a specific purpose, and mediators adhere to certain guidelines and standards when conducting mediation.


Mediation Standards


Certain standards apply to mediation services. The rules for mediation are outlined in the California Rules of Court 5.210 - applies to court-connected child custody mediation. It addresses the authority of mediation, the purpose of mediation, mediation definitions, responsibility for mediation services, mediation process, training, continuing education, and experience. Requirements for a mediator, mediation supervisor, and family court services director, education and training providers, and ethics as it relates to California mediators and California mediation.


Mediation Purpose


The mediation objective is to aid the parents in a child custody dispute to resolve their disagreements and build a parenting plan together in mediation that reflects the children's overall best interest. The purpose of mediation is outlined in Family Code 3161.


Mediation Limitations


Mediation may not be able to help all parents work out their disputes. Some cases are too complex or far too severe. In some cases, a parent may change his/her mind after signing a mediation agreement. If you sign an agreement in mediation and later change your mind, you may be able to cancel your agreement by submitting your cancellation request to mediation services in writing.


However, you should consult a child custody attorney to learn how to properly cancel your agreement and the timeline upon which you can do it. If you are involved in mediation, you should consult a child custody attorney in your area to learn about the mediation process, standards, purpose, rights, and what mediators can and cannot do in mediation.


Do not waste time in the uncertainty of losing custody of your kids or having the least visitation rights by not grasping child custody laws. Contact Mr. Binoye Jos at Jos Family Law for the best advice. Find the right custody arrangement and guarantee success with the top Irvine divorce attorney. For a free initial consultation, call Jos Family Law at 1-714~733-7066.