Iowa Divorce Mediation

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Iowa Divorce Mediation rules

The Supreme Court of this state requires that all mediation programs should adhere to the following rules-

  • IA Code 598.7 and 815.9- The expenditure of mediation is bore by the divorcing parties as is ordered by the Court or acceded to by the parties and may be taxed as Court costs. As per the law in this state, if it is determined that specific parties are unable to pay, then the costs of mediation are offered on a sliding fee scale
  • Although the parties reach a mediation agreement, until it is endorsed by the Court, it is not regarded enforceable
  • If any agreement is reached after any mediation, then the parties must present this agreement to their lawyers, if any
  • The divorcing parties which are undergoing mediation possess the right at all times to legal advice and presence of counsel
  • A mediator appointed by the Court should satisfy the eligibility criteria laid down by the Supreme Court of the state
  • Although the parties take part in mediation, it is not essential that they should reach an agreement
  • A participant in the mediation program must fulfill the following-
    • Be present at the mediation session with the mediator
    • During the mediation process, must listen to the explanation of the process by the mediator
    • Must present the self view of the case
    • Must listen to the opposing partner's response

Order of Iowa Divorce Mediation

Mediation is ordered by the Court in the following cases-

  • Request by either party
  • The Court has the opinion that it would be useful to the divorcing partners to come to an agreement

As per IA Code 598.7, if there is proof of domestic abuse, mediation will not be ordered. According to IA Code 598.41, if there is evidence of domestic abuse, but both parties accede to have mediation, then in spite of a protective order, mediation can be executed. However, it must be arranged at the local courthouse.

Introduction part of mediation

The introduction phase of mediation extends from the initial phone consultation to the first mediation session. The intention of this part is to increase the familiarity between the divorcing partners amongst themselves and with the mediator. The divorcing partners can take this chance to offer background information about the disputed points. They can make use of this part to make the mediator acquainted with the world they have been living in for the past months. If the mediator knows all the details of the circumstances of the divorcing partners, the mediator would be able to analyze the condition in a better way. This would enable the mediator to apply correct mediation techniques so that an agreement results.

During this introduction part, the mediator explains the process of mediation to the divorcing partners. This is a very vital explanation from the point of view of the divorcing partners. The reason is that each mediator has his or her unique methods. The divorcing partners are supposed to ensure that the technique of the mediator is apt for them. It is not astonishing if the divorcing partners realize during this phase that a particular mediator is not compatible for them.

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