Mediation helps separating and divorcing couples reach mutual decisions without court intervention with the assistance of a neutral professional third party. It is possible to mediate with or without attorneys present. Once a case is filed, most judges will order mediation before a contested final hearing takes place. Under these circumstances, you and your spouse are likely to be accompanied by your respective attorneys at the mediation conference. There are other cases where people have been advised by attorneys, but for various reasons, may choose to proceed to a mediation conference without attorneys. Then, there are people who wish to proceed on a “pro-se” basis which means they choose not to engage the services of an attorney, but may still wish to settle their issues through the mediation process.
What can I expect?
At The Center, we specialize in ”pro-se mediations” where you are assisted by the mediator without the presence or involvement of attorneys.
You and your spouse will have the opportunity to speak directly to one another about issues of concern in a neutral environment and to engage in cooperative problem-solving. In this non-threatening environment you will work together to customize solutions that work best for you and your family. Although, it is certainly not a requirement, once the Agreement is prepared, we nevertheless, recommend that you have a brief consultation with an attorney of your choice to review the Agreement prior to signing it.
Our Mediation Expertise
We also offer “co-mediation” in which two mediators assist you and your spouse through the process. The director of The Center, Enid Miller Ponn, is a family law attorney and a Florida Supreme Court certified family law mediator with extensive mediation experience and knowledge of the legal issues. Depending on your needs, she is available to mediate your case alone, or along with a mental health professional and/or child specialist who will serve as the second mediator. This approach is particularly helpful when your case involves more extensive or challenging decisions related to your children. It is also especially helpful if there is an emotional or psychological “imbalance” between you and your spouse. In other cases where the issues are particularly complicated from a financial or tax perspective, we may suggest co-mediation with an experienced financial professional.
We can mediate in Spanish or English.