It Must be FAIR

This past week I came close to ending a mediation due to unfairness.  The high earner was the dominant personality, the low earner just wanted out of the marriage.  The deal was unfair.  Perhaps I crossed the line from a neutral, but I remember my mentor in 1982 saying “if it ain’t fair, don’t sign […]

Read More

Why is child support so high?

This week the Dad and Mom were settling parenting time, and when we ran the child support guidelines, the Dad was anxious, saying if he paid guideline support he could not make enough money to live.  It was correct, paying the $385 per month in support would mean he could no longer meet his living […]

Read More

Talking to the Kids

It is an awful event, to tell your kids you are divorcing their parents.  It takes courage to do it, and more courage to do it right.   First, know your kids already know there is trouble in paradise, so telling them they are right might be hurtful, but in some respects there is a […]

Read More

What does a divorce cost?

Divorce can be a very expensive item. Competent and experienced family law attorneys regularly bill hourly from $ 175 per hour, to $ 300 per hour or more. In addition, they delegate to staff who also charge hourly. The more the argument, the more the time, the more the expense. Mediation is less expensive, but […]

Read More

Fairness, all about fairness

Every mediation I do is about people, and I learn something everytime. This month one couple worked out an agreement that I found unfair. As you know by now, it is your divorce and your agreement. However I have made some personal decisions about fairness. If I have an issue with your agreement, I will […]

Read More

To prepare for mediation

People call to set mediation, and ask what to do to prepare for it. When we make an appointment, I will send you the intake forms. Fill them in and return them. Sometimes it means you double check account numbers, real estate values, pay stubs, insurance quotes. But doing that ahead of time lets me […]

Read More

Returning to work?

The divorce process means money gets tight, and stay-at-home parents (usually Mom) needs to update her employment skills.   Going through this is tough, but here can be some help.  This past week I toured the local Women’s Resource Center. Their services are free. They offer a myriad of help to the woman returning to […]

Read More

What do I do?

What do I do, if I have a Court hearing set? Court hearings happen.  Michigan requires at least one court hearing, called a pro con, even if there is an agreement.  The greater the dispute the more you will attend court hearings.  Some folks just want to tell the Court their side of the story.  […]

Read More

My Spouse won’t go to Mediation

 Mediation is court ordered in Kent County, and occasionally ordered in surrounding areas.  What people need to remember is that most family law matters settle outside of court anyway, but attending mediation often clears the air and lets parties communicate in a protected arena.  It seems like Mediation is costly, but compared to ongoing litigation, discovery […]

Read More

Using Technology

Mediators often tend to be experienced lawyers – you can translate that to “older”.  We were not born with an IPod in our hands.  This means technology is not second nature to some of us, and we need to adjust.   Using technology in mediation is a great chance to let the parties visualize when they want, […]

Read More