Articles Tagged with mediation

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Venn Crawford, non-attorney Marketing Assistant

Today is the birthday of Martin Luther King Jr., a figure who needs no introduction. Fifty-five years since his famous speech, we are continuing to move towards King’s dream of “a nation where [we] will not be judged by the colour of [our] skin but by the content of [our] character.”

It isn’t just the speech that makes King stand out, however. In addition to being a powerful speaker, King was a champion of nonviolent activism. Tactics such as sit-ins sought to capture the public’s attention and force them to be aware of the discrimination occurring in racially-segregated restaurants. One of the strengths of a non-violent approach is that any retaliatory action on the government’s part just makes the protestors easier to support – they appear as underdogs suffering under the iron fist of big brother. Perhaps the best summary of nonviolent activism is simply Marc Riboud’s photograph of an anti-war protestor offering a flower to a soldier.


Marc Ribaud, “Jeune fille à la fleur (variante),” October 21, 1967.

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Dear Carolyn,

I have a two-year-old and a five-year-old, and I am separated from their Father.  I am filing for custody and divorce.  I hear I am going to have to go to mediation with the Father, and I really don’t want to see him. I am not exactly afraid of him, but it sure is unpleasant being around him.  Do I have to go to mediation, really?

~ Curious


Dear Curious,

You are likely going to have to go to a court ordered session of mediation to see if you can settle custody and visitation of your children with their Father.  Hopefully, the mediation process will end with a settlement and improve the situation with the children’s Father.  Do not worry as you will not

Mediation was added by the legislature to the custody statutes with five aspirational goals: (1) reducing acrimony; (2) developing custody solutions in the best interests of children; (3) providing parents with informed choices; (4) providing a structured, confidential and cooperative facility for discussion of co-parenting; and (5) reducing litigation and litigation of custody cases.

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Carolynby Carolyn J. Woodruff, JD, CPA, CVA, North Carolina Family Law Specialist

So you filed for custody in Guilford County.  What are going to be the steps to the trial?

Step One:  You file a Motion or Claim for Custody if there isn’t a Custody Order already.  If there is a custody order, then you filed a Motion alleging a “substantial change of circumstances” concerning the welfare of the child or children.  This “substantial change” can be something harmful going on regarding the children or something that would be beneficial to the children if a change is made.  State your reasons for wanting custody or a change in custody carefully.

Step Two:  You will have to go to a custody mediation orientation in Greensboro and then attend mediation with the other parent with a court mediator.  You will not be permitted to take your lawyer with you.  Two results will occur: (1)  you and the other parent agree.  If there is agreement, the mediator writes the agreement and sends to you and your attorney.  Your attorney will review the agreement with you to make sure you understand and to make sure the agreement is appropriate for you and your children.  (2) There is no agreement.  If there is no agreement, the custody mediator will call and “impasse”, and you can proceed to try your case. Continue reading →