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Family Law Mediation

A family law matter can resolve itself through one of three main processes (and sometimes a combination):

  • Litigation
  • Collaboration
  • Mediation

Litigation is the classic approach, where everyone has a court decide their family’s fate, with or without the assistance of an attorney. It can be an ugly process, but there are certainly time when a Court is necessary to enhance accountability or rectify wrongdoings. Most of the time, however, litigation is too dramatic, too costly, and too disruptive to the family that is already struggling.

Collaboration is an alternate to litigation that uses many of the same players, but does NOT use the Court. It may seem about as expensive as litigation—at least at first—but it is focused on assessing everyone’s interests in the case and meeting them all as much as possible.   A Collaborative case includes not only two attorneys, but also experts to advise in regard to children and financial issues, as well as coaches to help the process along. While there is no culminating Court date, there is a lot of support for all of the parties involved, and a lot of useful guidance.

Mediation is different. It is the least intrusive and likely the least expensive of the options. Mediation is a process where both parties—Husband and Wife—come to see ONE attorney who guides them through the dissolution process (or some facet of it), helping them work through conflicts as they arise. In certain cases, a party may wish to consult with an attorney “of their own” as the process continues or certainly as a settlement agreement is being produced, but the main relationships are between the parties and their one mediator. Together, they fully inform each other in regard to the issues, the law, and the process, and together they work everything to a sensible conclusion…without a lot of experts, time or costs.

The Maloof Law Group, APC believes that vast majority of dissolutions and post-judgment matters can and should be resolved through mediation. Few issues are so complicated or controversial to really require the cost and rigors of litigation or collaboration, and families are generally better served by processes that are faster and less expensive.

Nick Maloof and Derek Hooper, along with the rest of our team, would be very pleased to help you with your family law matter as your mediator.   Please contact us to schedule a consultation with all parties present.

Sacramento Family Law Dispute Resolution Methods

Litigation, Collaborative Practice, and Mediation Defined and Compared

 LITIGATION:

This is the classic courtroom drama. Each party has his or her own attorney and, with much fanfare, every bit of evidence is poured over, every witness is called to the stand, and every effort is made to gain every advantage possible. Certainly, some of these matters are more contentious than others, and most family law disputes and conflicts settle short of going to trial, but that does not mean that a series of hearings have not occurred, and much money has been spent.
Maloof Law Group, APC acknowledges this manner of resolving disputes, and though neither we nor our clients can entirely control a given situation, we strive to make the best out of the classic adversarial system. This means we utilize discretion, charge reasonable fees, pick battles, and seek to find reasonable compromise (consented to by our clients in advance) so as to ensure an outcome that is as favorable as possible at the lowest cost of time and money as possible.
This is not an easy task, but Maloof Law Group, APC has proven in many instances that it can be done, and done successfully. We can and will fight for your rights and safety, but we can and will also do so in a way that keeps the "big picture" clearly in view.
 

 COLLABORATIVE PRACTICE:

Collaborative practice is different than family law litigation, the main distinction being that, unlike mediation, each party has their own attorney, but neither attorney is permitted to go to court. Rather, a series of experts are hired to consult with the family and, together with their input and the input of the attorneys, the family makes decisions rooted in compromise but based upon complete and thorough information. Collaborative practice is less expensive than contentious litigation, but is also more productive, and more solutions-oriented. It is an ideal dispute resolution mechanism for any family law petitioner or respondent who wants a thorough opportunity to be heard, but would rather engage in open and candid discussion versus engage in the uncertain battle of litigation.
 

 MEDIATION:

Mediation has both family law parties sit at a common table with a common facilitator who provides each with valuable information, controls the cadence of the conversation, and ensures that each party gets an opportunity to be heard. As a result, the mediator brings about agreements that were otherwise unreachable, and then distills those agreements into the documents necessary to convert them into orders of the court. The mediator him or herself has no authority to make decisions, as a court does, but simply acts as a means to educate the parties and search for workable solutions to problems previously thought unsolvable. Some cases should not proceed by mediation (domestic violence cases, for instance), but some cases that should be mediations spend altogether too much in the litigation arena and wind up costing themselves not only additional money, but also time.

Sacramento Domestic Violence Lawyers

No one deserves to be abused, and abuse comes in many forms. The rules and customs behind what constitutes "abuse" vary by jurisdiction, with some requiring actual violence to have already occurred or significant threats to have already been made. Others, by contrast, will utilize the restraining order on the basis of "mental" or "psychological" abuse.
 
In addition to the varying standards of abuse, the jurisdictions vary significantly as to the forms and procedures followed to obtain protection.
 
If you are the victim of abuse, please, break the cycle! Please contact the Maloof Law Group, APC today to confidentially discuss your options, to effectively strategize how you can escape, and to hopefully rid you from the stress and pain your relationship has caused. We care about our clients, and are well-equipped to provide aggressive representation to those who have been taken advantage of. Please contact us today.

Sacramento Family Law Child Support Attorneys

Statutory guidelines usually dictate what child support will be, but the calculations remains subject to much debate. What is the party's true income? What is his or her true time-share with the child(ren)? What deductions or hardships are legitimate offsets to support?
 
The issue of child support is, on one hand, easy to see, but on the other difficult to determine. Most would agree that a parent has an ongoing obligation to support his or her children, but exactly what that obligation should be remains the subject of significant debate. We at the Maloof Law Group, APC are skilled in the debate issues and will work with you on fashioning a support order that not only serves the parents well, but, more importantly, serves the children as well.
 
If your case involves child support calculations, or perhaps you are in "arrears" and need to find a way out, please contact the Maloof Law Group, APC for a free consultation today with on of our child support attorneys.

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Nick, Lisa and the fantastic Adoption team at Maloof Law Group are at the top of our referral list whenever we have a woman who is considering Adoption as an option for her unborn child.

Marie Leatherby
Executive Director, Sacramento Life Center

Fortunately, with the help of Nick and Lisa, we have been given the tools to better communicate the incredibly unselfish choice Adoption can be.

Lynne Fuller
Administrative Assistant, Sacramento Life Center
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