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Photo of attorney William Marcus Wilkerson
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Mediation for child custody issues

On Behalf of | Dec 6, 2022 | Family Law |

Child custody issues are often one of the most rage-inducing aspects of a divorce settlement in Texas. Children are incredibly important to parents and each parent often wants to maximize their custody no matter the other parent’s circumstances. Mediation can be an alternative to most common methods of custody resolution that can provide for the child while also pleasing the parents involved.

What is mediation?

Mediation is a form of conflict resolution that is focused on the input of a mediator. A mediator is a third party brought in to help reach a settlement beneficial to all parties. Unlike in arbitration and litigation, the decisions offered by the mediator are non-binding.

They simply make recommendations that the parents involved may not have thought of or been willing to agree to at earlier points. The goal of the mediator is to overcome the resentment and biases that have prevented the parties involved from finding a settlement in earlier periods. Mediators are often successful at achieving a resolution about 70% of the time, an impressive success rate for a non-binding process.

Mediation and child custody

Mediation is particularly effective for child custody due to the difficult and contentious nature of many custody hearings. In most cases, a protracted custody battle can lead to immense stress for both children and parents alike. There can be permanent damage and strained relationships from months of arguments or an arbitrary decision by a judge.

Mediation helps to reduce the chances of these disputes. It pushes both sides to come to an agreement that will benefit them and their child the most. The mediator will often take on advice from childcare professionals and propose settlements that have a proven track record of success. This influence can greatly increase the odds of arriving at a child custody settlement that is satisfactory to everyone involved.