I am an Attorney Mediator, and that combination offers a client more options and enhanced advice. Even as an Attorney, I fully believe that an attempt at a mediation process often makes litigation completely unnecessary. It is also usually much less expensive and provides for much more control of the outcome. Why should we give someone in a black dress (Judge), who does not know us at all, and has only a few minutes to listen to us, the power to ORDER us to a particular resolution of OUR case…? The common theme with Court-Ordered resolutions is that they are decided fairly quickly in Court–and NO ONE leaves happy–usually not even the lawyers.
We have witnessed disputes, that had persisted for years, even between long-term friends or family members, that resisted even the “genius” of Attorneys and the Court-system, resolved in literally only hours. We have seen these individuals enter the mediation room as “disputants,” unable to talk to each other, or even look at each other, and then after Mediation, leave as friends again.
These results cannot be guaranteed for every Mediation case, but the odds are probably in your favor…
Divorces or business, personal, or neighborhood disputes should not be hammered to Court, forced to litigation like a broken record . . . as if there were no other option. Alternative solutions, like Mediation or Arbitration, always make better financial sense–and almost always produce better, less expensive, longer-lasting results. Isn’t this what we all want?
I am a second-career attorney. My first job after college was to fly aircraft off of U.S. Navy ships for twenty years. I flew E-2’s and retired in Norfolk, Virginia in 2006. I began mediating family and business disputes after earning my certifications in Virginia in 2004.
I was certified for both general and family mediation in Virginia in 2004. I have also been qualified as a Mediator Mentor in Virginia and mentored dozens of mediators working on their qualifications. I mediated for the BBB in Norfolk and in the general district court in Chesapeake, Virginia regularly before I began law school in 2005. I was honored as Mediator Rookie of the Year at the Virginia Conflict Resolution Center in Norfolk in 2004.
I only believe in the facilitative approach to mediation. I believe that any other approach is actually not mediation. Facilitative mediators do not make decisions for the clients/disputants, do not evaluate their proposals, and do not even push for final resolution. The purpose of mediation is not resolution necessarily; even that decision is up to the clients.
I received my undergraduate degree from Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Oklahoma. I finished my MBA from Old Dominion University by going to grad school at night while I was on active duty in Norfolk. After I retired from the Navy, I attended Regent University School of Law for my Juris Doctor degree. I am licensed to practice law in Virginia.
Fees vary widely depending on the nature of the dispute, but are all hourly arrangements. My firm requires a retainer deposit in advance to begin work and refunds any unearned portion when an agreement is written or when the clients desire to cease the mediation process.