Child custody issues in Alaska are usually a lot less dramatic when parents can work things out privately. When a judge has to step in and make custody and visitation decisions, parents are pitted against each other, and there can be a lot of negative consequences. That’s why mediation can be so valuable in divorce cases that involve children.
Child Custody and Visitation Mediation Program
The Alaskan court system maintains a voluntary mediation program for divorcing parents. The program covers the cost of mediation in most cases, so parents of all income levels can take advantage of the benefits of mediation. You can use this program to resolve issues around child custody, visitation and other aspects of co-parenting.
Benefits of mediation
Resolutions that are created in the mediation process usually become part of the official divorce decree and custody agreement. That means that, although a judge may sign off on your mediated agreement, the court will be much less involved in your case. Child custody cases that can be resolved privately are usually much less complicated and involve less intrusion into your child’s life.
Who doesn’t qualify for mediation
The program will not provide mediation in divorce cases where domestic violence is an issue. If there is a restraining order in place for domestic violence, the safety of the victim is considered the top priority. Divorcing spouses that have domestic violence concerns may speak to a mediator by themselves to determine whether their case can be mediated.
You may give mediation a try
Successfully mediated child custody cases can be a win-win for everybody involved. However, there are still cases where the communication between parents is so strained that mediation doesn’t work. If your divorce is especially contentious, you can still give mediation a try before going to court.