What Makes a Divorce Mediator Qualified?
Divorce mediators serve a valuable purpose in the divorce community. A divorce mediator does not act as a legal representative, but they do help couples negotiate a legal document, the separation agreement.
A mediator is essentially a neutral third-party to a series of negotiations, but not just anyone can become a mediator. As of now, many states do not have required certifications for mediators to practice. Massachusetts has no requirements a mediator must meet to practice mediation, but mediators can seek certification to increase their credibility in the field. And, the court will typically rely on certified mediators when it refers a case to mediation.
Mediators are held to certain standards they must meet in their day-to-day practice with or without official certification.
To learn these standards, they take classes in a basic mediation training program. These programs are a significant investment of time and resources. The classes cover alternative dispute resolution, the role of the mediator, the goals of mediation, and how to achieve them. A mediator may learn the basics from a training program, but they learn even more in hands-on training and practice. Divorce mediators may also enroll in continuing education classes to keep abreast on relevant issues in divorce and family law, much like attorneys are required to do.
Divorce mediators may also be divorce attorneys, though they don’t have to be. Some may still practice divorce law while others are dedicated solely to the practice of mediation. It is usually best to work with a divorce mediator who is also an attorney because they will have the kind of information and experience needed to help you and your spouse navigate the Massachusetts divorce process.
If you are looking for a qualified and experienced Massachusetts divorce mediator, you should speak to several in your area. There is no substitute for significant experience, so ask your prospective mediator how many years they have been practicing divorce mediation and what education and training they’ve completed. Ask them about any certificates they may have and what their experience in family law more broadly is. Training, experience, and dedication to the field are the most important qualities you should look for in a qualified divorce mediator but don’t overlook passion. Mediators who love what they do often facilitate the best results.
Do you have questions about divorce mediation? If so, Mediation Advantage Services can help you. Experienced in divorce mediation, Polly A. Tatum can help you and your spouse navigate the mediation process by providing you expert guidance and encouragement. Based in historic Worcester with a satellite office in Northboro, MA, our firm serves all cities and towns throughout Massachusetts and Worcester County including, Auburn, Paxton, Leicester, Sutton, Grafton, Shrewsbury, Westboro, Northboro, Southboro, Holden, Sterling, Princeton, Worcester, Charlton, Millbury, Dudley, Spencer, Brookfield, Sudbury, Natick, Framingham, Hopkinton, Milford, Blackstone, Leominster, Fitchburg, Acton, Jefferson, Barre, Oakham, Cambridge, Newton, Marlboro, Lancaster, Bolton, and Hudson. Call our office at (508) 795-1557 , fill out our online form, or email us at [email protected] today to schedule your Complimentary Mediation Success Planning Session. You can also sign up for our eNewsletter or download our free e-book for more information regarding divorce in Massachusetts.