Family law disputes are unique because the issues are so important and personal to the participants. The challenge is not only to resolve the immediate conflict but, in many cases, to find a way to sustain these relationships over time.
Many families often choose a mediator who will shuttle between the participants and their lawyers to craft a deal. In doing so, the participants place great power in the mediator and their lawyers, who are ultimately responsible for shaping the outcome. While the parties may reach a deal, it is often one that can feel imposed and unsatisfying.
I believe in using a different approach in the mediations I oversee; one in which the participants take greater control of the process. The professionals involved support the participants in making decisions together that will yield a more satisfying and therefore, sustainable, outcome.
I encourage lawyer participation. The law is used to educate the participants about their legal rights and possible legal outcomes. But unlike traditional litigation, mediation is a malleable process. Participants can decide how much weight to give to the law. With the support of an experienced and certified mediator, participants and their lawyers can generate creative solutions that meet their interests even if the outcome may be different from what a judge might decide.
I work closely with the participants and their lawyers to customize the process and to create an environment that is respectful to the participants’ unique circumstances, whatever they may be. Joint conferences are valuable to help participants understand each other’s views, explore their interests and generate options to resolve the dispute. Private conferences can be equally valuable to help communicate information, evaluate proposals and develop options when the parties find it untenable to work together effectively. No matter the situation, we will work together to find the best method to work towards an efficient and comprehensive solution to your family law concerns.
Please contact Victoria Frias to schedule a mediation appointment with Oren Weinberg Mediator Services either by phone at 647-494-0113 ext. 104 or by email. An email will be sent to counsel or the self-represented parties with my mediation agreement as well as an intake form.