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Gerald-Esquire
Gerald-Esquire, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 3299
Experience:  30 years of experience
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Should a 10 year old child have representation during a

Customer Question

Should a 10 year old child have representation during a mediation hearing between her parents. I know they have someone in court to represent them when parents go to court Can a decision be made without input from the child espicially when the decision is opposite of what the childs wishes are and she pretty much called a liar when reasons for her choice are presented
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Gerald-Esquire replied 8 months ago.

Hello,

Thank you for using Just Answer. I want to provide you the best service I can. Please feel free to ask any follow up questions you have.

I am an attorney with 30 years of experience; I hope to provide you information that will help you in resolving your question.

Generally the Guardian Ad Litem (GAL), (which is the attorney assigned to represent the child in court) is NOT present during Mediation proceedings. This is because the Mediation is NOT binding on the parties. It is a process where the mediator tries to get the parents to come to an agreement to resolve the Custody and other issues. If either party disagrees with the results or recommendations of the mediation than they do not have to adhere to them.

Also most importantly the discussions of the Mediation are supposed to be confidential and are not supposed to be reported to the Court. Having the GAL in the process risks that confidentiality.

Consequently, the Mediators do not want the GAL involved in the process.

This law review article addresses this issue in detail:

http://digitalcommons.pepperdine.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1055&context=drlj

I hope the information I provide is useful to you. I want you to be comfortable and satisfied with my attempt to assist you. Please, if you have ANY follow up questions, feel free to ask. Please note that I am generally unavailable Friday evening through Sunday.

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Good luck.

Please note: Information is educational and not given as legal advice. Only your local attorney can give legal advice. I can't establish or accept an attorney-client relationship with you. All posts are available for public viewing.

Kind regards,

Gerald

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