In a best-case scenario as couples seek to resolve family law disputes, personal matters can remain personal at the same time that each individual obtains legal protections. Mediation can provide a way to do just that — keep personal family matters in the hands of the affected individuals rather than in the hands of a judge who does not know the family well.
Founded in the 1960s, Cogdill Nichols Rein Wartelle Andrews (CNRWA) is now one of the largest law firms in the Everett and Seattle areas. Our family law attorneys represent parties to family law matters in mediation, in collaborative law settings and in traditional courtroom litigation. For select cases, our attorneys represent out-of-state clients with matters that fall under the jurisdiction of Washington courts.
Advantages Of Mediation Over Traditional Litigation
If you resolve your divorce or child custody dispute through mediation rather than through a court battle, you may:
- Avoid the high costs of litigation, keeping legal costs more manageable
- Follow your own timetable, rather than the rigid timetable of a courtroom
- Insist on a full understanding of proposed resolutions
- Keep emotions out of the equation as you determine your own future
- Keep private family matters out of public record
- Maximize the power of compromise for the betterment of all members of the family
- Increase the likelihood of achieving a mutually satisfactory divorce settlement or parenting plan redesign
Mandatory Mediation In Washington Divorce Cases
In an effort to reduce the time and cost associated with divorce litigation, the Snohomish County courts now require divorcing couples to go through the mediation process before attempting to resolve a dispute in trial. Some exceptions apply, like in cases of domestic violence or other instances where good cause to forego mediation can be demonstrated.
Mandatory mediation can be beneficial to many divorcing couples, including those with particularly contentious relationships, because it can give both parties the opportunity to voice their goals in a controlled setting. In many cases, it yields favorable and enforceable divorce agreements.
Attorneys To Serve As Mediators In Your Legal Matters
Mediation is settlement-oriented by nature. Any mediator you work with must be focused on finding a solution that is fair and favorable for both parties, rather than pushing aggressively for a particular party's demands. Still, an awareness of litigation can be highly beneficial during mediation.
The partners in the firm all have dual experience as mediators and as litigators — a valuable combination during divorce proceedings. As mediators they can speak to the way courts will rule because they have experience in courtroom proceedings. They understand when to be flexible and when issues can give rise to other conflicts.
Representing Individuals In Mediation Or Collaborative Law Settings
If you would like to speak with a lawyer at our firm about resolution of divorce, separation, child custody matter, parental relocation or modification of a court order through mediation or collaborative law, please contact our office.