Divorce Mediation

Mediation and Family Law

Divorce Mediation Services

Navigating the complexities of divorce can be emotionally and financially draining. Rita Frayer, J.D., Civil Mediator and founder of Mediation and Family Law Documents understands the challenges you face during this sensitive time. Our Divorce mediation services are designed to offer a constructive and amicable alternative to traditional litigation. Mediation empowers couples to take control of their divorce process, fostering open communication and mutual understanding. With a focus on collaboration, we strive to help couples reach fair and equitable agreements, ensuring a smoother transition into the next chapter of their lives. When you need divorce consulting and mediation services, contact Mediation and Family Law Documents . Call (805) 914-9644 to schedule an appointment.

Mediation and Family Law

What is Divorce Mediation?

Divorce mediation is a voluntary and confidential process where a neutral third party, the mediator, facilitates communication and negotiation between divorcing parties. Unlike courtroom battles, mediation encourages spouses to work together to reach mutually acceptable solutions. Rita Frayer is trained to guide couples through discussions about key issues, such as asset division, child custody, and support. This alternative dispute resolution method often proves to be less adversarial, time-consuming, and costly than traditional litigation.

Mediation and Family Law

The Mediation Process

  1. Initial Consultation: The journey begins with an initial consultation where couples can meet a mediator. This session provides an opportunity to discuss the mediation process, ask questions, and determine if mediation is the right fit for their unique situation.
  2. Information Gathering: During this phase, our mediators work with each party to gather essential information about assets, debts, and any other relevant details. This comprehensive understanding ensures that discussions are informed and decisions are made with a complete picture in mind.
  3. Joint Sessions: Mediation sessions typically involve joint meetings between the divorcing parties and the mediator. These sessions focus on identifying common ground, addressing concerns, and developing solutions. A mediator facilitates productive communication, ensuring that each party has a chance to express their needs and concerns.
  4. Drafting Agreements: Once agreements are reached, our team assists in drafting a comprehensive divorce agreement. This document outlines the terms and conditions agreed upon by both parties, covering issues such as property division, spousal support, and child custody arrangements.
  5. Legal Review and Finalization: While the mediator is not a legal representative, we encourage parties to seek independent legal advice to review the proposed agreement. Once both parties are satisfied, the final agreement can be submitted to the court for approval, formalizing the divorce.
Mediation and Family Law

Benefits of Divorce Mediation

  1. Preservation of Relationships: Unlike the adversarial nature of litigation, mediation focuses on preserving relationships, especially when children are involved. By working together to find solutions, couples can establish a foundation for cooperative co-parenting and mitigate the emotional toll on all parties.
  2. Cost-Effective: Mediation is often more cost-effective than traditional divorce proceedings. The streamlined process can significantly reduce legal fees and court costs. Additionally, the faster resolution allows both parties to move forward with their lives more promptly.
  3. Control and Empowerment: In mediation, couples retain control over the decision - making process. This empowerment fosters a sense of ownership and accountability, leading to agreements that better suit the unique needs and circumstances of both parties.
  4. Confidentiality: Mediation is a private and confidential process. Unlike court proceedings, which are a matter of public record, the details of mediation remain confidential. This discretion can be particularly valuable when addressing sensitive matters such as financial information or personal concerns.
Mediation and Family Law

Why Choose Us for Divorce Mediation?

  1. Professional Expertise: Rita Frayer is a trained professional with a deep understanding of family law. This expertise ensures that you receive knowledgeable guidance throughout the mediation process.
  2. Compassionate Approach: Rita recognizes the emotional challenges that come with divorce. Rita Frayer approaches each case with empathy and compassion, creating a supportive environment for open communication and resolution.
  3. Tailored Solutions: Every divorce is unique and Rita Frayer works to craft solutions that align with the specific needs and circumstances of each couple. This personalized approach ensures that the agreements reached are fair and sustainable.
  4. Efficiency and Timeliness: Rita understands the importance of a timely resolution. The streamlined mediation process, guided by Rita Frayer's experience, is designed to efficiently address issues, allowing couples to move forward with their lives without unnecessary delays.

Rita Frayer, J.D. Civil Mediator, is a graduate of Ventura College of Law and specializes in Family Law Mediation, Divorce, Custody & Visitation Issues, Restraining Orders and as a Mediation alternative to Court proceedings. Ms. Frayer has served as a member of the Ventura County Superior Court Mediation Panel Member, is a Past Board Member of the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Ventura , and a Founding Member and past Chair, VCCF Women’s Legacy Fund.

Mediation and Family Law Documents
Address: 1601 Carmen Drive, Suite 215-H,
Camarillo, California 93010
(805) 914-9644
(805) 367-4520-facsimile

Our Services

Our mediation service resolves disputes without going to court.

Gather all relevant financial documents including tax returns, bank statements, retirement account info, debts, assets, etc. This provides a clear picture of the marital estate to divide.

Make a list of your goals and priorities for the mediation. Think about things like spousal support, child custody, and property division. This helps you advocate for what’s important to you.

Consult with an attorney beforehand if possible. They can advise you on the law and your rights. Mediation is informal but having legal know ledge helps.

Make a list of proposals and options for dividing assets, support, and custody. Aim for compromise. Mediation involves negotiation.

Be prepared to discuss parenting plans if you have minor children -custody schedules, holidays, etc. Focus on the kids’ best interests.

Expect to provide full financial disclosure. Mediation requires openness, honesty, and good faith from both parties.

Maintain control of your emotions during the session. Mediation works best in a calm, rational atmosphere.

Be flexible and willing to listen. An experienced mediator will help guide you to a fair resolution if you keep an open mind.

Simple cases involving no children and minimal assets could require as few as three mediation sessions of two to three hours duration each, for a total timeframe of as few as 3-6 hours. On average, cases with shared assets and minor children could require six or more sessions lasting 2 to 3 hours each and totaling 6 to 15 hours of mediation sessions.

Complex cases involving significant assets, financial accounts, property ownership disputes, and/or child custody battles typically take at least six longer sessions of 3+ hours each; totalmediation time could exceed 20+ hours.

High-conflict relationships where both parties find it hard to come to an agreement may require multiple sessions lasting several hours or even up to 30+.

Expert divorce mediators estimate that most standard cases with some issues to work through typically can be resolved within 4-8 sessions lasting 2-3 hours each, taking around 8-24 hours total to resolve. Mediation often proves faster than going through lengthy court proceedings where divorce could take several months or over a year to process.

Once a mediated settlement is reached, the agreement is written up as a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) or Marital Settlement Agreement.

These documents are submitted to the court along with a petition for dissolution to start the divorce proceedings. This is usually done within a few weeks of completing mediation.

However, there is a mandatory 6-month waiting period between filing the initial divorce paperwork and finalizing the divorce in California.

During this waiting period, the couples live under the terms of the mediated agreement whileseparating assets, arranging child custody, etc.

If needed, the mediated agreement can also be converted into a formal divorce judgment during the 6 months.

At the end of the 6 months, the petitioner can file the final divorce paperwork, including property settlement, custody order, name change, etc.

The court will then grant the final divorce decree soon after, legally finalizing the divorce.

So in total, the typical timeframe from reaching a mediated settlement to a finalized divorce isaround 6-9 months in California.

The waiting period allows for reconciliation if desired, though rarely happens after meditating.

Mediators usually charge an hourly rate ranging from $200-$400 per hour.

Simple divorces may require only 1-3 sessions of 1-2 hours each, so total cost could be $800-$3000.

Average cases often need 4-8 sessions of 2-3 hours each. At $250/hr, total would be $2000-$6000.

High asset, high conflict divorces involve more sessions going longer. At $400/hr, cost for 10+ sessions could exceed $10,000.

In addition, there may be filing fees of around $500 if submitting agreements to court.

Some mediators charge a flat fee for limited sessions based on case complexity. This ranges $1500-$5000 typically.

Many mediators are willing to accommodate those with lower incomes or high costs by adjusting their rates.

Compare mediator experience, qualifications, and rates when choosing. Fees impact overall cost.

Even on the high end, mediation is usually less than the $15,000-$30,000 or more that contested divorce litigation can cost with lawyers and court fees.