The Courts require that parties attend mediation to make an attempt to resolve the issues in the various areas of Family Law, as well as other types of disputes. There are limited circumstances where mediation would not be ordered by the Courts, but could be arranged privately by the litigants.
You can elect to attempt to resolve your matter by using a mediator, rather than to initially file a case with the Courts.
A mediator cannot give legal advice to either party and will not direct either party to agree to any terms, however, a good experienced mediator can help tremendously in getting all or some of the issues between two parties resolved. Mediation is much more family friendly- in that you can agree to creative ways to handle issues, do it at a table where both parties are heard and can understand the other person's points, and it can be done at your pace (rather than the artificial deadlines set in a trial schedule). Mediation is also cost effective for both parties. A mediator with experience in litigation is important, as well as one who has a good track record of listening to varying viewpoints and finding common ground.
Ms. James is on the Court referral list of mediators and also offers private mediation services for those who are not yet in litigation. She has an excellent track record of resolving complex, high conflict cases, as well as those that offer small areas of dispute. Using a mediator with her unique skill set and experience is vital to achieving the best results prior to the expense and stress of trial.