Room 314, 128 North 2nd Street, Yakima, WA 98901
Honorable Robert W. Inouye
Honorable Lani-Kai Swanhart
Yakima County Superior Court
Domestic Relations Mediation
Are you pursuing a marriage dissolution (divorce) or parenting plan modification through the Court?
Would you consider Mediation to try to work things out with the other person?
What is Mediation?
Mediation is a confidential, voluntary process through which people involved in a conflict can work things out. Disputing parties are assisted by trained, certified, neutral mediators to create a solution that is workable for everyone. In some cases, mediation may be required by local court rule.
Mediation can often help!
Through mediation, both parties sit down with trained mediators to work on elements of their dissolution process. Both parties have a chance to say what they would like to see happen in the final court order. The mediators will then help the parties work out a resolution, if possible. The resolution will be written up as a Settlement Agreement or as part of the parties’ court paperwork and both parties will receive a signed copy.
How can I set up a mediation session?
If both parties want to mediate, you or your attorney can call the Dispute Resolution Center (DRC) of Yakima and Kittitas Counties to request a mediation at 453-8949 or 1 (800) 853-8949. The court also has a list of private qualified mediators. You may call the Court Facilitator at 574-2695 to obtain a copy of this list. If the other party does not want to mediate, you can ask the court (via a Motion and Declaration to Require Mediation) to send both of you to mediation prior to meeting again in court.
How much will it cost?
Mediation services for family related matters are available on a sliding fee scale which ranges from $25 to $170.00 per party for each 2-3 hour mediation session. Fees can be waived in extreme financial situations.
What happens if the Mediation doesn’t resolve the conflict?
You could come back to court to have the judge to make the decisions necessary in your case.
What is the “DRC” and how is it funded?
The Dispute Resolution Center of Yakima and Kittitas Counties is a non-profit agency under contract to the Yakima and Kittitas County Commissioners. Funding comes from a surcharge on filing of District Court civil cases, mediation and training fees, fundraising and grants. The DRC has been helping people resolve conflicts since 1994 and about 80% of people using our services reach a settlement.
In what Domestic Relations situations is mediation helpful?
Mediation is most helpful in situations in which parties are willing to sit down and talk together with the help of a trained mediator. The mediation process can help improve communication between divorced or separated parents. It can help them work together to develop a parenting plan that works well for the children and both parents. It can also be used to help divorcing couples divide up their assets and liabilities.