Recognizing the toll that litigation can take on clients, Ms. Castles prides herself on her ability to negotiate and settle mediationbrentwooddivorcelawyercases. Ms. Castles is highly trained in mediation techniques and has been successful in helping clients resolve their disputes outside of court. Ms. Castles received her Master’s in Dispute Resolution at Pepperdine University’s Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution.

What is mediation?

Mediation is a form of Alternative Dispute Resolution. Mediators are neutral third-parties who do not represent or advocate for either side. Mediators also do not give legal advice to either party. Because the mediator cannot offer legal advice, it can be helpful to include both parties’ attorneys so that both parties are advised as to whether the settlement is in their best interest.

During mediation, the parties will attempt to settle all or some of the issues in their case. Each party will attend mediation with their attorneys, and they will hire a third person to help negotiate an agreement between the parties. Your agreement must address the division of assets and debts, spousal support, child support and custody.

Typically, each party will be in a separate room with his or her attorney, and the mediator will go back and forth between the rooms to negotiate an agreement. Although it can be hard to imagine settling your dispute, mediators are well-trained in negotiation and are often experienced family law attorneys who are familiar with Tennessee laws and judges.

Mediation often saves parties large amounts of money, as they do not continue paying attorneys to prepare for trial. If you are able to reach an agreement at mediation, your Marital Dissolution Agreement and Parenting Plan will be drawn up while all parties are present, and everyone will sign the same day.

Benefits of Mediation

  • Mediation can save you money and time. Preparing for trial will run up your legal fees and it could take months to get on the court’s calendar depending on the complexity of your case.
  • Mediation is also confidential. The mediator cannot be called as a witness at any later court hearing and will not share any information with the other party unless you give permission for certain information to be disclosed.
  • Mediation allows the parties to maintain control over their situation. When you are unable to settle your dispute, you allow a judge to make very personal decisions for you. These decisions can shape your life for years to come. When you work toward resolution, you are able to retain some control over what your life will look like going forward.

Because Ms. Castles is aware of the great benefits of mediation, she looks to settlement as the first option for each case, and litigation as a last resort when the couples are unable to reach an agreement.

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