One question we often get is do you need to file for divorce before doing mediation. The answer is no. We can help you prepare divorce papers and tell you how to file them. Also, you can do mediation with or without lawyers.
Your mediation is confidential. What happens in the mediation cannot be used in litigation of the matters discussed in mediation. Mediation is voluntary. Your mediator(s) are neutral third-parties with no authority to decide any issues or make you agree to anything in the mediation. Your mediator may have many possible solutions for you to choose from that you may not have considered.
Our approach is designed to make the mediation process as helpful and efficient as possible. Similar to the Court process, we first want to get a good picture of what’s so right now. What are your assets? What are your debts? What are each of your incomes and expenses? What are your children’s schedules with each of you? This is the kind of background work that’s part of every divorce. It really helps to get as much of the background work done before the mediation but we can do it during the mediation if you prefer.
The first step is to work on the google spreadsheet that we will share with you and that will give us the information that only the two of you have. We will provide all the email and phone support you want to help you complete the spreadsheet, get your questions answered, give you the legal information you need and get you ready for the mediation.
The second step is to click on the “Schedule your initial phone conference” link in your spreadsheet. The main purpose of this mandatory call is to prepare you for any in-person mediation. On the call, we can help you complete the spreadsheet and get your questions answered. We will also give you the legal information you need to consider prior to any in-person mediation. We’ll also make a note of the things you’ve already reached an agreement on, for example, who is getting which car, etc.
The third step is in-person mediation. By going through the first two steps we’ve narrowed down what is left to discuss in mediation such that it is focused and fast. Phone mediation is available (which may be helpful if one party now lives out-of-town, etc).
We’ve found this methodology dramatically shortens the time it takes to complete the entire mediation process.
We do not prepare Qualified Domestic Relations Orders (QDROs). QDROs may be necessary to transfer certain types of pension benefits. We strongly recommend you have a QDRO expert prepare any QDROs.
We typically do not file your documents with the Court for you. But if necessary, sometimes we are able to arrange a courier service to pick up your signed documents and file them with the Court. Usually, once you have reviewed and signed the documents, you will take them to the Court, pay the filing fee and file them with the Court. You might consider bringing an extra copy of the signed forms so that the Court can put the case number on them and file stamp them and return them to you. In this way you know exactly what is on file with the Court.
$297 per person**
*On average, the total cost of mediation is less than 10% of the price of using lawyers. That’s 90% off the cost of using lawyers.
**We charge $200 per hour, a non-refundable $150 setup fee and a $200 paperwork review and/or preparation fee. A two-hour mediation with paperwork review/preparation would cost $750 but the $297 per party gives you almost an extra hour of mediation. It includes up to two hours of mediation and covers the paperwork review/preparation fee and the setup fee. Phone conferences, calls, emails, modification of paperwork and mediation are billed against (deducted from) the $297 per person fees in tenth of an hour increments. There is a two-hour minimum for in-person mediation.
Payment of the first $297 is paid as a setup fee due at the time the mediation is arranged. $150 of that fee is nonrefundable. The second $297 is paid when you schedule your initial phone conference.
Our goal is to support you in getting the most benefit from the mediation. If any additional hours beyond those covered by the $297 per party are needed they are charged at the rate of $200 per hour (billed in tenth of an hour increments). Because of our unique process, most mediations are completely finished in 3 hours or less.
Court Requirements outside of mediation:
The Court requires full disclosure between the parties. You can find out what documents the Court requires you to exchange with one another at this link: Colorado Mandatory Disclosure Requirements
If you have children, you are also required to complete a parenting seminar. The spreadsheet we share with you has a link to the available parenting seminars.
If all this seems overwhelming don’t worry, we are there for you every step of the way.