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  • What kinds of conflicts can be resolved with Family Mediation?

    Many types of conflicts are suitable for Family Mediation, such as:

    • Separation
    • Divorce
    • Non-parental Custody
    • Paternity/Parentage
    • Custody
    • Parenting Plans
    • Child Support
    • Joint Decision-Making Disputes
    • Children's School and Daycare Decisions
    • Children's Healthcare Decisions
    • Post-Secondary Support
    • Relocation
    • Modifications of all

    If you have a question about whether your situation is suitable for family mediation, give Nancy a call at 360-816-2246.


  • Why choose Family Mediation?

    Family conflicts are challenging experiences. These events can be costly financially, mentally, and emotionally for each party and their family members. Mediation focuses on negotiation, conflict resolution, and healing. It helps set the stage for future discussions and planning.

    Mediation can apply whether or not the couple is used to resolving conflict in a peaceful way. Mediators demonstrate solid conflict resolution skills. Other professionals may be included in the discussions including financial planners, attorneys, counselors, child specialists, and mental health professionals.

  • How does Family Mediation work?

    A family mediator works to bring balance and agreeable solutions to all parties involved. Instead of one party “winning” or dominating the other, both parties have an equal voice. The mediator is an unbiased professional who helps each person explore options and potential next steps.

    A family mediator works towards agreeable solutions for each member of the family. They help couples consider their current roles and how this will change in the future. Financial planning and discussions are included in the process.

  • Am I a good candidate for Family Mediation?

    The people who succeed in mediation have certain qualities.

    • They realize and accept that they need each other's cooperation to untie the emotional and financial knots of their relationship, or to resolve problems that arise after divorce
    • They want to avoid court and negotiate fairly because they will be seeing each other regularly as they co-parent their children, and stay involved with family and mutual friends after divorce
    • They are willing to listen to and consider each other’s needs, interests, and concerns
    • They are willing to compromise

    Sometimes people know they have these qualities but are not sure their partner does. Maybe their partner used to be trustworthy but doesn’t seem like that lately. If you are unsure about this, give Nancy a call for a free mediation phone consultation to discuss your concerns so Nancy can offer you the best guidance about whether mediation is right for you.

  • Will I need a family law attorney?

    You may choose to select a family law attorney to assist with your mediation process. Nancy, as your mediator, can share generalized legal information but cannot give either party personalized legal advice or opinions.

    I recommend asking an independent attorney to review your agreement prior to signing. Once the agreement is complete, it may be used to file an uncontested divorce or other agreed order.

  • Will we have to appear in family court?

    Probably not. One of the main benefits of mediation is that court appearances are often unnecessary.

  • What do I do first?

    It’s easy. Contact us by email or call (360) 816-2246 for more information or to set up a private, free mediation phone consultation for you and your partner.

  • When can I start Family Mediation?

    Many people wait too long before looking into mediation. While mediation can work at any time, you will get the greatest satisfaction and value, and save the most money, if you both make it your first choice for resolving your conflict.

  • What is decided during Family Mediation?

    Depending on your situation, the following may apply:


    • Child custody
    • Parenting time arrangement
    • Decision-making
    • Dispute resolution
    • Modifications


    • Home
    • Bank account
    • Vehicles
    • Household items
    • Retirement, pensions, IRA’s, 401k’s, and other investment accounts or properties
    • Businesses owned
    • Premarital assets
    • Inherited property
    • Gifted property
    • Debts
    • Taxes


    • Spousal support (alimony)
    • Child support
    • Insurance
    • Childcare expenses
    • Extracurricular expenses for child
    • Tuition, college etc.
    • Modifications

    Separation and Divorce basics

    • Timing
    • Payment of divorce professionals
    • Temporary arrangements
    • Disentanglement issues (such as bank accounts, cell phones, auto insurance)
    • Communication Plans
  • The other party is powerful; can I still be successful in Family Mediation?

    Yes! The mediator will ensure that one party does not overpower the other. Often, mediation brings each party to an equal level for negotiation.

  • How does Family Mediation work if we don't get along now?

    Many people are able to work through mediation when they don’t get along. Part of the mediator’s role is to help clients learn how to focus on the issue instead of attacking each other. High emotions can be tempered and peaceful discussions are possible.

  • How do family court documents get filed?

    Speak with your mediator about how to manage preparation and filing of the necessary court documents.

  • How do I talk to my partner about Family Mediation?

    Let the other party know it is your hope and goal to work together to find agreements that consider everyone's needs and are acceptable to all, and it is important to you that you - and not a judge - make decisions for your family. Ask if he or she would be willing to look at this website and to participate in a free mediation phone consultation.

    If you want to make an initial call by yourself, I am happy to talk to one of you to give you more information about the process and how mediation can work for both of you. As a mediator, I remain neutral. I don't discuss your personal situation until both of you are there so we avoid the problem of the other thinking I might have been somehow swayed to your side because you called first. Encourage all others involved in the conflict to call us too. I will gladly provide him or her the same information I gave you.

    I can also send you an email about mediation that you can forward when the time is right. That gets you out of having to try to explain things yourself.

  • What is a behavioral health specialist?

    A behavioral health specialist has skills that very few lawyers do. The behavioral health specialists who work with Nancy have special training in marriage and family therapy, child development, divorce mediation, collaborative law, and communication techniques. They are uniquely qualified to help partners and parents manage emotions and express their interests and needs in a way that the other can understand, without doing therapy.

  • What is a certified divorce financial analyst (CDFA)?

    A certified divorce financial analyst (CDFA) has skills that very few lawyers do. The CDFA’s who work with Nancy have special training in financial planning or accounting, and are skilled in analyzing data related to the financial issues in a divorce. They are uniquely qualified to help partners understand their financial data and make a plan to restructure their finances and cash flow as single persons, without advising either partner about future investment opportunities.