What is Mediation?

Mediation is a process used to help people reach agreements. In this process, a neutral, trained mediator works with people to discuss all of the issues related to their family conflict, to explore possible options for settlement, and to identify solutions that best meet the needs of each person involved.

When can Mediation be done?

Mediation can take place at any stage in a situation, and we believe that the earlier it is considered, the better. For example, when people make a decision to divorce, they are at a critical point.  Before any money is spent, or any commitment is made by either person to work with a particular attorney, the benefits of mediation should be considered. If mediation sounds like a good fit, both people can then seek out attorneys who are supportive of mediation to consult with them and advise them as to their specific situation. We believe that this approach can lead to peaceful, personal, and private solutions that most often save time, money, and stress.

If mediation is not considered until later in the process, there may have been significant time and money spent without reaching agreements, and emotions can run very high. Chances for reaching a peaceful agreement may have diminished, and the likelihood of having to resolve the case either through an expensive trial in court or late stage mediation is higher.

April M. Urban, Esquire is a trained mediator who is sometimes court-appointed to help parties attempt to solve their differences before reaching the trial phase of their case. Parties may opt to attempt private mediation before filing a court action by calling my office to schedule an appointment.

To learn more about mediation, visit the Mediation and Conflict Resolution Office or the Maryland State Bar Association.