Do You Need Mediation with Private Preliminary Planning?

Mediation with Private Preliminary Planning If you're looking for an alternative way to negotiate the terms of your divorce, with minimal input from the New York courts, you've probably already considered divorce mediation. Divorce mediation is an appealing way for couples to discuss what they need to get out of their divorce in an objective and balanced environment. Mediator and attorney Darren Shapiro offers mediation as one of the many solutions for parties he works with in New York and Long Island, from his office in Nassau County.

One of the things that makes divorce mediation so popular is the fact that it's often less stressful than appearing in front of a court to argue a case via litigation. Mediation uses conversations in a private setting between spouses to set the terms for a divorce. The agreements made during mediation sessions are drafted and presented to a judge when the couple is ready to get an uncontested divorce.

For Darren Shapiro, the most common way to begin mediation is with a joint meeting with both spouses. This way, both parties can learn about this office’s process and generally the issues that need to be covered and what they might hope to get out of mediation with Attorney Shapiro before they commit to divorce mediation. During joint consultation sessions, clients can discuss what kind of process their mediation might follow. Usually, this shared session helps people to feel as though they're getting the same level of guidance and support as their partners as to what will happen when they start working with this divorce mediator. However, there is an alternative solution recommended by some mediators that may work for specific people. Preliminary planning sessions involve the mediator in a case meeting privately with each spouse, before the full mediation experience, but after the initial consultation.

What are Preliminary Planning Sessions?

Preliminary planning sessions are one-on-one conversations between a client and their divorce mediator. These discussions are excellent for building rapport between a mediator and a new client. Additionally, mediators like Attorney Shapiro can also use the sessions to discuss any concerns that the individual might have with their mediation before the negotiation begins. When used correctly, preliminary planning can allow the mediation process to run more smoothly. A thorough planning process may even mean that you can complete your mediation experience faster too.

Importantly, however, if clients decide that they want to use preliminary planning, steps must be taken to maintain the objectivity of the mediation procedure. Clients can't be allowed to feel as though their ex-spouse is receiving an unfair level of guidance or help from the mediator. This is one of the reasons why Darren Shapiro always includes a joint up to 30-minute free initial consultation for the couples he works with. Because the initial session addresses the spouses together, neither one feels favored. Joint sessions keep both parties feeling like an equal part of the negotiation process. Used correctly, they can reinforce the feelings of trust that are necessary for effective mediation. While most our office’s mediation clients only do joint sessions, we now offer the preliminary planning session option, for couples that elect it.

Some experts, however, still believe that preliminary planning sessions have value. For instance, Golann, the man behind "Sharing a Mediator's Power" suggests that preliminary planning sessions are excellent for helping mediators to counsel clients on how to get the most out of their negotiation process. Mediators can provide advice on everything from collaboration to bargaining and more. During a session of anywhere from a shorter time to up to 2 and a half hours, clients can discuss anything that may be worrying them about the upcoming mediation.

Should You Use Preliminary Planning Sessions?

Many couples consider preliminary planning sessions to be quite useful. These sessions are an excellent way to access further guidance from an experienced individual like Attorney Darren Shapiro. Additionally, during preliminary planning, clients can develop their confidence and make sure that they're ready to get the best results from the mediation strategy. What's more, because mediators get an opportunity to learn more about their clients during these sessions, they can also work on delivering a more customized experience for each couple. For instance, after preliminary planning, a mediator like Darren Shapiro could begin the first true session by pointing out the shared values and expectations of both clients.

Though mediation is a popular form of dispute resolution, many clients still aren't sure how to use it to their advantage. As such, preliminary planning sessions can sometimes be useful when it comes to reinforcing basic negotiation skills in both parties. This means that each side will have the confidence to make sure that their voice is heard. Of course, private sessions can't continue throughout the entire mediation process, as this can spark distrust between clients. Mediators aren't there to give individual advice to each spouse or tell them how to pursue their best interests. When the official mediation sessions began, a review attorney is recommended (although not everyone takes us up on that recommendation) in order to provide ongoing legal assistance.

If you're interested in preliminary planning sessions, Darren Shapiro will be offering them as another option in his mediation process for couples that prefer this route. However, traditional mediation methods will still be available for those who would rather avoid preliminary planning. Contact Attorney Shapiro's office for divorce mediation and other solutions today at (516) 333-6555, or reach out using our online contact form.

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