Columbus, Ohio Family Law Mediation Services


What is Mediation?

Mediation is a process of resolving disputes where an independent mediator assists the parties in reaching a mutually satisfactory settlement. The mediation process is voluntary and is non-binding. The mediator is neutral and is primarily responsible for helping the parties overcome barriers in order to reach an agreement.  Mediation is empowering and provides the parties more control over their matter as opposed to deferring to a court to make the decisions.  A mediator experienced in family law matters is essential in order to help guide the process in the right direction.

Is Mediation Right for Me?  

Mediation is ideally suited to resolving family disputes such as ending a marriage, addressing parenting rights and custody issues and matters that arise after a final court order is issued.  Family Law Mediation is a viable option when all of the interested parties are willing to listen to one another and are committed to finding workable solutions to their differences.  Because the parties in a Family Law Mediation set the agenda, it is essential for each party to identify the issues to be addressed and being open to building bridges where appropriate.  Family Law Mediation is not appropriate if there is a history of domestic abuse, physical, emotional or otherwise, between the parties.

Family Law Mediation is Cost Effective

Family Law Mediation is significantly less expensive as compared to a contested court proceeding with attorneys.  Usually, the parties share in the costs of mediation.  Mediation can resolve differences at a fraction of the cost as compared with using attorneys.  Mediation is also more timely in that you are not taking endless time-off from work to attend court hearings with your attorney. Family Law Mediation is scheduled on your time-line, with identifiable objectives and agendas for each session that keep the process moving. Simply put, you have more control over your time and schedule when mediating a dispute.  Usually, disputes can be resolved in 3 to 5 mediation sessions.

What is the Mediation Process?

Initially, you will receive a packet to complete and scan and email back to our office.  Thereafter, mediator Dirken D. Winkler, J.D. (“Dirk”), will meet with each party individually to better understand the dispute, with joint sessions scheduled thereafter.   Each session will build upon the other, with an effort to focus on enabling the parties to work through issues and finding solutions. Once the parties reach an agreement it is reduced to writing.  Thereafter, one of the parties, or both, take the agreement to an attorney to have it formatted and submitted to the Court for approval.


Attorney – Dirken D. Winkler

Dirken D. Winkler has been licensed to practice law in the state of Ohio since 1997 and has attended mediation training through the Ohio Supreme Court education curriculum.  He has over fifteen years of family law legal experience and has served as a Guardian ad Litem, on behalf of children in contested parenting matters.  Dirk is well versed in the issues germane to ending a marriage, including property division, parental rights and the best interests of children. Let Dirk’s experience work for you in helping you resolve your family law dispute through mediation.