What Not to Say in Child Custody Mediation

Child custody mediation can be emotional and difficult. Here are some tips for your child custody mediation session:

  • To ensure fairness, avoid saying anything negative about the other parent in front of your child.
  • Keep disagreements private during the mediation session.
  • Be respectful and courteous, even if you disagree.
  • Focus on what parenting plans are best for your child, not just what you want.
  • Don't make promises you can't keep. Stay realistic and honest about potential child custody agreements.

Following these guidelines will make the process fair and respectful for all involved.

Contact Clarity Family Law's experienced child custody attorneys for further legal advice regarding mediation and child custody issues at (313) 513-1919.

What is Child Custody Mediation?

Child custody mediation is a form of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) in which a neutral third-party mediator helps parents reach an agreement on the terms of their child custody arrangement. The voluntary process involves both parents discussing issues such as legal custody, parenting schedule, extracurricular activities, visitation schedule parental rights, and negotiating a legally binding physical custody agreement.

The goal of the child custody mediation process is to come up with an outcome that meets the best interests of the child, rather than going through a more adversarial child custody dispute court process.

Why is it Important to Watch What You Say During Mediation?

Child custody mediation is an important process for settling disputes between two parents regarding the care and well-being of a child. To have successful child custody mediation it is important to be mindful of what you say. Not only can certain topics and words lead to emotional outbursts and more conflicts, but they may also damage the child custody mediator’s opinion of you or your parenting abilities.

Potential Consequences of Saying the Wrong Thing

During child custody mediation, what you say can have serious consequences. The mediator is an impartial third party and will not take sides or advocate for either parent. Their role is to facilitate a favorable child custody agreement for both parties.

a judge reviewing a child custody case

It is important to be mindful of what is said during the process to ensure productive communication. Saying the wrong thing can lead to an unfavorable outcome for one or both parties and may negatively impact future agreements on the child's care.

In child custody mediation, parties should openly discuss what they believe is best for their child. The mediator is a neutral third party and does not represent either party's interests. It is important not to try to influence the mediator.

Having legal representation in the form of a divorce attorney during mediation is advisable. A lawyer can protect your rights and interests. Anything said in mediation may be used in a court hearing.

Financial Records & Future Relationships

When discussing child custody mediation, keep the focus on what's best for the child. Avoid discussing financial records, as they can create conflict. Talking about future relationships is also not appropriate and should be avoided.

Custody Battle & Negotiation Process

The process of child custody negotiations and battles can be emotionally charged and difficult to navigate. When going through court-ordered mediation or private mediation, all parties need to remember that the goal is to reach an agreement that is in the best interest of the child. This means that certain topics or comments should be avoided at all costs during a mediation.

Negative comments about the other parent should never be made, as it could lead to a breakdown in the negotiation process and potentially damage any future potential solutions or arrangements that are put into place.

Learn More: How Much Does a Michigan Custody Lawyer Cost?

Additionally, accusations or threats should also be avoided during mediation as this can lead to an unfavorable outcome for one or both parties.

Producing Real Solutions vs. Complications

When going through a child custody mediation, it is important to focus on producing real solutions instead of further complicating the situation. It is not helpful to either party to make accusations or bring up past events that cannot be changed. Blaming one parent for anything will not be beneficial and can lead to further disputes between both sides. For mediation to work, both parties must be willing to cooperate and focus on the future.

The goal of mediation is to find a solution that works for all parties involved and it is important to keep this in mind when discussing different topics during a mediation. By avoiding topics that could lead to conflict or further complications, both parties will be more likely to reach an agreement that best serves the needs of their child.

What to Avoid Saying During Child Custody Mediation

When it comes to child custody mediation, emotions can run high as both parties try to agree. For the best possible outcome, you must remain respectful and avoid unreasonable demands or saying anything that could be seen as confrontational or inflammatory. Here are a few common phrases to avoid during child custody mediation:

Negative Comments About the Other Parent or Family Members

Negative comments about the other parent or family members should never be made in a child custody mediation. Making such comments can hurt the mediation process and create an atmosphere of acrimony, which is not conducive to a successful outcome.

Further, making negative comments about the other parent or their family members can be hurtful and damaging to the relationship between both parents and can cause emotional distress to the child.

Criticizing a Child or Making Promises You Can’t Keep

When it comes to child custody mediation, certain things are best left unsaid. One of those things is criticizing a child or making promises you can’t keep. This behavior can lead to animosity and distrust between the parties involved in the custody dispute as well as further complicate an already difficult situation.

a gavel and family cutout of a desk

Criticizing or badmouthing a child during a mediation session can be extremely damaging to the child’s emotional well-being, and making promises you can’t keep is unfair to both parties.

During any mediation process, one of the worst things that can be said is a threat to withhold visitation or change child custody arrangements without consent. This type of statement can be seen as an attempt to manipulate the other party and can threaten the trust between both parents. It can also cause unnecessary stress and tension in the mediation process, making it difficult for both parties to reach an agreement.

Disparaging Remarks About Lifestyle Choices, Habits, or Characteristics

Disparaging remarks about lifestyle choices, habits, or characteristics should never be uttered during child custody mediation. Such comments can create an unproductive atmosphere and further divide the two parties involved in the dispute. Furthermore, these types of remarks can negatively affect any potential for agreement between the parents as they will be less likely to trust one another if there is animosity present.

In addition, it is important to avoid making any comments that could be interpreted as offensive, belittling, or demeaning. Keeping a respectful and positive attitude throughout the mediation process will help both parties agree productively and amicably.

Our Child Custody Lawyers Fight For Your Family's Future

At Clarity Family Law, our child custody lawyers have the experience, knowledge, and dedication to fight for your family’s future. Our attorneys understand that child custody disputes often involve strong emotions and passions. That’s why we take a holistic approach to resolving these matters in a way that benefits everyone involved — especially the children.

During child custody mediation, the goal is to find a resolution that works for everyone involved. It's important to be respectful and avoid saying anything confrontational or inflammatory. Our experienced Dearborn family law attorneys can help guide you through the legal process and achieve a positive outcome. Contact us for a free consultation.

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