Reaching Amicable Solutions
Using Collaborative Mediation℠ Since 1979
Mediation stands in strong contrast to the traditional divorce process in which each
member of the couple hires an attorney to negotiate or litigate for him or her.
Janet Miller Wiseman is one of the two longest established and experienced mediators in Massachusetts and is a seasoned psychotherapist. Janet has been helping parties understand the legal statutes and design creative agreements for:
• Living arrangements, talking with children according to age and developmental stage
• Division/buy-out/sale of real estate and marital property
• Minimizing tax and divorce costs
• Equitable division of child expenses and educational costs
• Secure coverage for medical/dental/life insurance expenses
• Repayment of marital and individual debt
• Adult support, if necessary
The Collaborative Mediation℠ Process
Mediation clients have the advantage of learning Miller Wiseman's own collaborative mediation process that builds trust and long-term negotiation skills. They have the security of a comprehensive “checks and balances” process wherein we dialogue with our experienced collaborators about intricate legal, tax and parenting questions and refer clients to experienced experts such as review attorneys, CPA’s, real estate, business and pension appraisers, adolescent and child experts and a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst.
Our clients present the judge with a court-ready Mediated Separation Agreement with input from highly respected experts.
Janet Miller Wiseman, principal, is an original co-founder and Past President of the Mass Council on Family Mediation and of The Negotiation Collaborative. Janet has well over 35 years of experience with clients in suggesting and co-crafting cost-effective, genuinely creative alternatives, not simply legalistic formulas.
We welcome your questions at MediationBoston@gmail.com or 781-861-9847 and will provide you with complimentary information.
Please visit this link to read the recent Alimony Law, Chapter 208, s 48,
"An Act to Reform and Improve Alimony"
Please visit this link to read chapter 208,s.34, the equitable property division statute.
"Equitable Property Division Statute"
More information is provided below or you can read the FAQ on Divorce Mediation
Benefits of Mediation
Divorce Mediation is a respectful, inexpensive, confidential and efficient process.
The benefits of this process include:
• Cost, time and conflict savings
• Better post-divorce adjustment for all family members
• Full voluntary financial disclosure of all income and assets
• Expert help in talking with, assessing children’s needs and living arrangements
• Comprehensive collaboration with the best financial, legal, parenting experts
• Teaching Couples to Preserve Their Relationship for the Emotional Health of Children
Results of Mediation
The couple’s Mediated Agreements detailing the full range of their agreement on parenting,
support, division of property and tax consequences are:
• Drafted by the mediator
• Reviewed separately by attorneys for each party, a checks and balances process
• Finalized into a joint “Separation Agreement”, and signed as a legal contract
• Taken into Probate Court for a judge’s approval, becoming an order of the court.
The final mediated agreement, when signed, is a legal contract. It must be filed with a probate court when the couple has a divorce hearing to become a court order. In an uncontested divorce action,
the divorce will be final in 120 days.
Tasks for Consideration
Divorcing partners, together with the expert assistance of the experienced mediator,
create alternatives, then decide upon:
• Living arrangements, talking with and assessing children’s needs
• How children and parents will prosper during and after the divorce
• Financial support of children through college
• Financial support of each other, when necessary
• Division/buy-out/sale of real estate and marital property
• Tax consequences of sale/transfer of property
• Medical/ dental insurance/life insurance
• How to cover children’s expenses in the event of death
• How to divide debts/liabilities
During the mediation process, each member of the couple:
• Lists and testifies to ALL marital property and ALL income
• Makes full financial disclosure
• Estimates costs of living separately
• Receives help in deciding what he or she needs r.e. children and finances
• Negotiates to a solution satisfactory to both parties
• Leaves mediation with a “Mediated Separation Agreement”
• Has a collaborative or review attorney review agreement, file joint petition for divorce,
and “the divorce pleadings”
• Submits the Separation Agreement for court approval as the final divorce agreement
Advantages to a Respectful and Economical Process
Divorce mediation clients find mediation respectful, efficient and economical.
They find mediation helps them to:
• Custom tailor an agreement to meet their own unique needs, not just legalistic formulas
• Minimize adversarial interaction through a mutual agreement process
• Protect their children from undue pain and confusion
• Take charge of their own lives
• Develop a joint commitment to the agreement that enhances the chance that
both parties will live up to its’ provisions.
• Ensure a confidential and voluntary process (Mass State Law, Chapter 233, Section 23c)
Janet Miller Wiseman is one of the most experienced divorce mediators in Massachusetts. She is a certified Divorce and Family Mediator by the Mass. Council on Family Mediation, a professional group she co-founded in 1981, and for which she was Past President for two years. She receives monthly updates on critical issues and she has been creating joint alternatives with her divorce, separation, pre and post-divorce clients since 1979. Janet teaches and trains mediation professionals in academic and corporate settings in both English and Spanish in North and South America. She has published a book in the mediation field and numerous articles.
As standard practice in the mediation field, all mediation clients have their advisory attorneys review their joint agreements in their individual best interest after mediation. Only a judge, not a lawyer, nor a mediator is empowered to approve a Separation Agreement.
In many cases clients benefit during the mediation from consulting with:
• Advisory/Review Attorneys
• Appraisers of property, businesses, pensions
• CPA’s, CFA’s, tax advisors, financial planners, Certified Divorce Financial Analyst
Fees for Mediation Services
We make every attempt to complete the mediation as quickly as possible consistent with meeting the needs of both parties. Our sessions are two hours in length and may take from 2 sessions to approximately 5 sessions. The time spent to draft the agreement is billed. Fee's slide down or up from a base of $225 per hour, dependent upon income, a standard suburban mediation fee.
Click to read Divorce Mediation FAQ
A highly enlightening and engaging two hour power point presentation
"Including Negotiation and Mediation Skills for Your Divorcing Group or Population"
is available. Call 781-861-9847.
Janet Miller Wiseman provides Mediation and Counseling Services in the Boston area. She is an accomplished Divorce, Family and Business Mediator, and Individual/Couples/Family Psychotherapist. She has over 40 years of experience as an individual/couple/family psychotherapist and over well over 35 years of experience as a divorce mediator. Her office is located in Lexington, MA. and while she serves clients from all over Massachusetts, many of her clients are from Acton, Arlington, Burlington, Bedford, Concord, Gloucester, Framingham, Lincoln, Malden, Newton, Watertown, Wellesley, Winchester, Waltham, Woburn, Reading and Salem. Janet is also willing to travel to your location for training, presentations and workshops.