OVERLAND PARK DIVORCE LAWYER ANSWERS: WHAT IS JUDGE ASSISTED MEDIATION AND HOW WILL IT HELP ME?
Judge assisted mediation can be a huge benefit to the parties. One benefit of this is that it typically has no cost depending on whether it is a current Judge or a retired Judge - if it's a current Judge, it is usually no costs. The parties are able to utilize the court services to have a current Judge assigned for the assisted mediation. This will be a Judge who is not assigned to your case but in most cases, has a good understanding of your current Judge’s practices and decision making. This can be helpful because you get a little bit of an inside look on what a trial may look like. For example, if you were in a Judge assisted mediation and you have one sticking issue and the Judge mediating that, knows that the other Judge has typically ruled this way on this issue - well that aids settlement because if you went to Court you would know that that issue would be tried in a certain way. That is a big incentive to settle your case right before trial and avoid the cost of preparing for and attending litigation. There are also private retired Judges who will do assisted mediation as well which is another alternative if you can afford it. The private Judge assisted mediation is usually at the retired Judge’s office and he or she will have more time because it is privately paid by the hour.