How to Get Started
BEGIN WITH A FREE INTRODUCTORY CONSULTATION:
We offer a 15-minute free introductory consultation to determine if Online Dissolution Mediation will work for you. The purpose of the consultation is to answer any general questions you have and to help you determine if mediation is right for you. The consultation can be by video or telephone. None of the facts of your particular case or circumstances will be discussed during this meeting so that the process is not compromised.
COMMENCING ONLINE MEDIATION SESSIONS:
Once you decide to proceed, use the contact form, email, or text us and let us know you would like to begin. We will work with you to set the sessions on days and times convenient with your schedule. Sessions are 60 minutes. If you prefer a longer conference, back to back sessions can be scheduled.
Once your first mediation session is set, a retainer fee agreement will be emailed to you for signature online along with an invoice for the fee. Payment can be made by credit card or ACH bank transfer through the secure QuickBooks system. Payment of the retainer fee must be made 24 hours prior to your first mediation appointment.
As we commence the process, you will receive forms to complete outlining your assets, debts, income, and expenses. Dianne will assist you in completing the forms during the mediation sessions.
Alternating sessions will generally be set with each party. Dianne will address any emergency issues or those that the parties feel have priority first and will continue to work through each aspect of your case until all issues are resolved. You will receive memorandums along the way documenting what issues have been discussed, those that have been resolved, and those that will be addressed in the next session. A draft of the final settlement of all issues will be reviewed with each party and sent to local counsel for formalizing and processing.
Unless the parties have local counsel that they would like to work with, Dianne will contact several attorneys in your jurisdiction to give you an option to choose whom you would like to worth with to handle the filing of legal documents in your local courts. Every jurisdiction has different rules and it is essential to employ local counsel for the preparation of necessary documents to commence the action and finalize the DIvorce/Dissolution. Costs are minimized since the scope of employment is limited to the preparation of documents. Parties will pay local counsel directly for his or her work.
Individual attorneys are not required during the process, however, Dianne encourages both parties to meet with an attorney of their choice for one session to review the final documents after mediation is concluded.
A retainer fee of $1,250 per party, is required upfront. Often one party wishes to have longer sessions or more frequent sessions than the other party. By having separate retainer fees, each party is free to decide what level of participation is right for them. Any unused retainer will be refunded.
Mediation sessions and other services are billed at $225.00 per hour. Other services including telephone calls to local attorneys to set up the divorce papers, telephone calls to appraisers or other experts necessary for the action, preparation of documents including memorandums and the proposed settlement, emails to clients, etc. Fees are charged in 10-minute intervals.
Monthly statements will be emailed to each party showing all charges to date and the balance of the retainer fee available. If a retainer is depleted, additional retainers will be required. Sessions and memorandums of those sessions will be charged individually to the party. TIme spent jointly for the parties will be billed one-half to each party.