top of page
  • Writer's pictureAlan Jacobs

Attorneys at the Mediation Table?


Like Rachel Alexander, generally, in my practice, divorce mediations are intimate, including only the parties and the mediator. This often adds to the sense of confidentiality and privacy. It works well for many clients who want to speak candidly about difficult issues in a safe, unbiased environment.

Sometimes, however, for a multitude of reasons, clients wish to include their attorneys in sessions. A client may feel that by having his attorney present, his rights are better protected or that a power imbalance between the parties is being equalized.

While there are indisputable benefits to including attorneys throughout the process, there are some downsides of which clients should be mindful. When litigation attorneys, unfriendly to and/or untrained in mediation, enter the process, the mediation can morph into a mini litigation.

Conversely, a mediator is trained to look at the whole family and the fallout of an acrimonious, imbalanced settlement. The attorney, in his zealous advocacy, might focus on micro “wins” rather than the macro, long-term big win: a post-divorce functional family and a settlement agreement that will actually be adhered to by both parties. The mediator works from a fundamental, guiding principle that any sustainable solution must include the interests of both parties affected by its terms. If one member of the family “loses,” no family member can escape the ramifications over time.

3 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Tips for healing after divorce

Rebuilding your life after a divorce is undeniably challenging and healing after divorce can take time. Deconstructing large parts of your life and rebuilding them again is certainly emotionally drai

Five Key Items to Understand About Mediation

Parties involved in litigation should always keep an open mind about mediation at every stage of litigation. Cases that resolve without having to go through a trial or arbitration can potentially s

bottom of page