Mediation is a form of alternative dispute resolution in which the parties discuss and negotiate the various issues attendant to their family law matter, with help from a neutral facilitator (the mediator). The mediator assists the parties by structuring the discussion process, and also by suggesting various settlement options for the parties’ consideration. At its best, mediation is a non-confrontational, non-adversarial process in which the parties maintain control over the outcome of their family law matter.

At Grandchamp & Guyette, we have the requisite training and experience to mediate your family law matter. If you have already chosen a mediator, we can help you prepare for mediation by identifying key issues, generating various settlement options, and by educating you as to the advantages and disadvantages of various settlement proposals. We can also attend mediation with you, if desired, to make sure your interests are effectively advocated.

Early Neutral Evaluation (ENE) Social (SENE), and Financial (FENE)

The Minnesota Court website defines Early Neutral Evaluations as follows:

Early Neutral Evaluation (ENE) strives to move families through court efficiently and inexpensively by working with them early on to reach agreements that will foster the best interests of their families. ENE helps parties focus on the critical issues they face in a confidential, non-confrontational, and settlement-oriented alternative dispute resolution program.

In ENE, parties and their attorneys attend an ENE session with experienced evaluator(s). Each side presents its view. The evaluator(s) discuss the case alone and then share their perspective on the merits of each position. Evaluator(s) identify the key issues and predict how the case is most likely to conclude. The parties are always able to confer with their attorneys and discuss settlement. Sometimes additional meetings are scheduled.

Issues related to custody or parenting time take part in Social ENE (SENE).  In those cases a two person male/female team of evaluators will work on the case. If the issues relate to financial issues, then a Financial ENE (FENE) with a single evaluator, is used. In either type of ENE, evaluators are highly experienced professionals who have also been formally trained to help resolve cases in the ENE program.

Over half of the cases settle during the first session and over three-fourths reach at least some agreement. Absent full resolution, the team advises the assigned judge about areas of agreement, additional needed services and how to focus future assistance on the most relevant issues.

Parenting Consulting

Parenting consulting is a service offered to parents who are experiencing difficulties co-parenting their children. With all the parties committed to working together, a positive relationship between the parents and their children can occur. By establishing a comfortable environment, founded on open communications, we are able to identify and help resolve the issues between the parents or issues between the parents and their child.