Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Benefits of mediation for minor children

The Benefits of Mediation for Your Children

Being involved in a family court dispute is one of the most emotionally draining experiences a person can have, especially if child custody or visitation is involved.  

During traditional family court litigation, if the parties cannot agree on how to resolve issues involving their children, they are turned over to a judge.   

After hearing testimony and reviewing evidence, the judge will decide which parent has primary custody of the children and how much the other parent is allowed to see them.

Using mediation in Texas family court cases allows the parties to maintain control over their dispute.  

Mediation encourages the parties to create their own settlement.  

When parents do not have to fight over their children in court, they are less hostile toward each other.  

Maintaining a peaceful relationship will provide multiple benefits for the entire family.

When custody or visitation is disputed, the courts often appoint an attorney called attorney ad litem to the case to meet with the children and offer an opinion on these issues to the court.  

Of course, both parents will be ordered to pay for the attorney ad litem's time. Fees usually start at $500 and can run into the thousands - I've seen some ad litems charge $15,000 for difficult and complex custody cases. 

If the parents can work out these issues in mediation, their children will not have to meet with a stranger to discuss their relationships, which can often be scary for them.

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