Family Mediation Program

About the Program

The Family Mediation Programs in Lake County provide divorcing parents the opportunity to submit custody, visitation, and removal disputes to mediation before proceeding to a contested hearing before the court. The Lake County Family Mediation Program is governed by Local Court Rule 4-3.19.
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Benefits of Mediation

Mediation is a way for parents to resolve their disputes in a private confidential setting with the assistance of a neutral third party whose role is to assist the parties in reaching an agreement on disputed issues by identifying issues, exploring options and facilitating communication between the parties. A mediated resolution allows the parties to avoid the uncertainty and expense of contested court proceedings.

Parents are the experts on their own children. In most cases, it is preferable for parents to decide between themselves how to raise their children instead of having the court decide. Both parents and children stand to benefit from a mediated resolution to a family dispute, children by seeing their parents work cooperatively to plan for the future, parents by learning better communication and problem solving skills.

Eligible Cases for Mediation

In addition to custody, visitation, and removal issues, the parties may also submit their property disputes to mediation through the Family Mediation Program in Lake County.

Ineligible Cases for Mediation

Not all cases are appropriate for mediation. Mediation is not required where the presence of the following impediments to mediation hinders the ability of a party to negotiate safely, competently, or in good faith:
  • Domestic violence
  • Intimidation
  • Substance abuse
  • Child abuse
  • Mental illness
  • Cognitive impairment or other impediment
To view the current list of approved family mediators, please refer to the List of Approved Family Mediators (PDF).