Mediation for Child Custody in Kansas
Divorce is complicated, especially when child custody is involved. Fortunately, there are resources available for divorcing couples in Kansas to access in order to resolve disputes. Mediation is one option for dealing with the division of custody, parenting time, and legal responsibilities of parents.
What is Mediation?
Mediation is a type of alternative dispute resolution in which a neutral third-party mediator helps two or more parties reach an agreement about their legal dispute. It is a voluntary process in which the mediator facilitates communication, but does not impose a solution. The mediator helps parties identify common interests and develop solutions that are mutually beneficial.
Benefits of Mediation
Mediation is often preferred to litigation and trial because it is usually a quicker and less expensive way to resolve disputes. Family mediation can help divorcing couples move on with their lives and find new ways to co-exist, even if it is as co-parents. It can also be beneficial for the wellbeing of children who are caught in the middle of their parents’ dispute. Additionally, once a mediated agreement is reached, it is legally binding.
How to Get Mediation for Child Custody in Kansas
If you are divorcing with children and need help in resolving child custody matters, you may want to consider accessing mediation services. In Kansas, Family Law Courts have their own mediation services to assist separating parents. Here are the steps to follow to access the service:
- Contact your nearest Family Law Court – You can find out about the court’s mediation services and how to access them.
- Assess eligibility – This may include financial considerations, current family situation, and whether everyone is willing to participate in mediation.
- Choose a qualified mediator – The court may refer you to an in-house mediator, or you can choose an external mediator from the list of qualified providers.
- Attend the mediation session – The mediator will guide the session and help identify and resolve the issues that need to be discussed.
- When an agreement is reached, it must be approved by the court – If both parties are satisfied with the agreement, they must sign it, then the mediator will submit it to the court to be approved.
Mediation is an accessible, quick and cost-effective option for resolving disputes between divorcing parents. It allows couples to focus on what is best for their children and creates a positive environment in which to resolve the difficult issues associated with child custody.
What documents do I need to file for child custody mediation in Kansas?
In order to participate in child custody mediation in Kansas, you will need to file a written request with the court. The request must include the name of both parents, the date of birth of the child, the county in which the family lives, and the legal basis for the request. Additionally, you will need to submit any applicable court orders, settlement orders, or parenting plan that are applicable to the custody dispute. Lastly, if custody mediation has previously taken place, you must provide copies of the mediation agreements or orders.
What is the typical length of a child custody mediation in Kansas?
The length of a child custody mediation in Kansas can vary, but typically lasts between 2 to 3 hours.
During this time, the mediator will go over the details of the case and facilitate discussion between the parents. The mediator will also help each family member to understand their respective rights and responsibilities. At the end of the session, the mediator may assess the progress made and suggest a plan for moving forward.
What is the process of child custody mediation in Kansas?
In Kansas, child custody mediators help parents reach an agreement on custody and visitation issues. It is recommended that parents work with an experienced attorney to protect their legal rights before starting the mediation process.
The first step in the mediation process is for the parents to attend a pre-mediation session. During this session, the mediator explains the process, the parents discuss their goals, and the mediator assesses the couples dynamic. The pre-mediation session helps the mediator determine whether the parties might be able to come to a reasonable agreement through mediation.
Following the pre-mediation session, the parents begin the formal mediation process. During the formal session, parents discuss each of the custody and visitation issues and propose different resolutions. The mediator can offer suggestions, ask questions, provide legal information, and ask the parents to consider how a resolution might affect the child.
If the parents cannot reach an agreement, the mediator can suggest alternative methods of resolving their dispute. They may recommend further mediation or court litigation, or suggest that the parents consult with an attorney.
The mediation process is often effective for parties who are able to work together and face the same problems. Mediation gives parents an opportunity to discuss their concerns, reach an agreement that works for them, and potentially maintain a better relationship going forward.
What are the requirements for a Kansas child custody mediation?
In Kansas, a child custody mediation is an alternative dispute resolution process that helps parents reach agreements on issues related to the custody and timesharing of children. To be eligible for child custody mediation, parties must meet the following requirements:
1. Both parties must agree to participate in the mediation process.
2. Both parties must desire to maintain an amicable relationship and to make a parenting plan that is in the best interests of the child.
3. Both parties must have the mental capacity and understanding of their rights and responsibilities under Kansas law to enter into a valid and enforceable agreement.
4. Both parties must have a valid identification card with a photograph.
5. Parties must submit a valid financial statement with proof of income before the mediation session.
6. Parties must have completed an educational program regarding the impact of divorce on children.
7. Parties must submit all necessary documents for the mediator to review before the mediation session.
8. A mediator certified by the Kansas Supreme Court must be present during the mediation session.
9. The mediation session should take place in a neutral and private location.
10. Both parties must sign all necessary documents before the final agreement is reached.
What is the process for a Kansas child custody mediation?
1. Mediators will provide an overview of the mediation process and explain their roles and responsibilities.
2. The parties will discuss their overall goals and objectives.
3. The parties will exchange information about their family, such as communication styles, parenting philosophy and lifestyle.
4. The mediator will help the parties to identify issues to be decided by the court (if necessary) and those that are appropriate to be resolved through mediation.
5. The mediator will discuss dispute resolution options and help the parties negotiate a parenting plan agreement.
6. The mediator will help the parties reach a satisfactory agreement that is in the best interests of the child.
7. If the agreement is accepted by the court, it will become a legal order.