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Attorney Divorce Vancouver Washington document sample
Attorney Divorce Vancouver Washington document sample
E-News October 2005 A Professional M ediator’s Resource Guide President’s Letter In This Issue Dear Colleagues: President’s Letter As you are probably aware, October 20th has been designated Conflict Resolution Day by Award to Group the Association for Conflict Resolution (acrnet.org/crday/). I encourage you to join in Chair one of the many opportunities locally and nationally to celebrate this day, week and New Members month. The cities of Seattle and Vancouver, Washington (www.ci.vancouver.wa.us/mediation/conflictresolutio nmonth.htm ) have also similarly Certifications endorsed this celebration. Many states and local governments are doi ng the same. By Re-Certif ications happy coincidence, increasing awareness of Mediation and A lternative Dispute Resolution is one of the themes your WMA Board and Leadership are trying to emphasize this year. Now, more than ever, as we as a country face the challenges of national disasters, Articles of Interest conflict and uncertainty, we invite you to get involved at your local community level to Transforming help celebrate this positive development. Relationships Through Restorative Sincerely, Justice Kevin R. Cornwell The Future of President, WMA Mediation __________________________________ Chair of UMA-RUAA Work Group Receives 2005 President’s Olympia Report Award Uniform Mediation Act Signed Into Law WMA was pleased to present its 2005 President’s Award to local attorney Nicholas Wagner for his outstanding work as chair of the UMA-RUAA work group at its annual meeting. This work group, which included WMA, was asked to review, revise, and recommend the Short Stuff Uniform Mediation Act (UMA) and the Revised Uniform A rbitration Act (RUAA) to the Review: Washington State Legislature for passage. A Practical Guide for Resolving Government Without Nick’s legal knowledge, skill as a mediator and arbitrator, and political savvy, it Contract Controversies is unlikely that this project would have been brought to a successful conclusion - the UMA (2d Ed) was signed into law on April 22, 2005 and the RUAA on May 13, 2005. Whenever the work group got bogged down on an issue, it was Nick’s patience, Contact Us understanding, and willingness to see new possibilities that lead the group forward. Much Editor: Darrell Puls of the language crafted to address the often competing concerns of the work group’s members, was Nick’s. His dedication and commitment to this project, and his superb facilitative skills have made it possible for the Washington State mediation community to be beneficiaries of a strong UMA-RUAA that works for Washington’s many member organizations. Congratulations Nick! And thank you for your dedication and commitment to the UMA - RUAA. _______________________________________ New Members! The following mediators have joined WMA in 2005: Richard Blumenthal, Cheryl Cheney-Stoudt, Jeffry Coulton, Roxanne Cull, Micky Forbes, L. Jean Garaham, Cheryl Harvey, Judge David Hulbert, Kirby Juhola, C. Richard Ksalin, Kathy Kiwala, Arie Liebhaber, Robin Low, Sally Mayo, Irene Mazur, Theresa Meade, Cheryl Metcalf, Coral Miller, Erin Nelson, Clare Pederson, Phillip Stephen Pino, Roger Ridgway, Catherine Schatzel, Carin Smith, Nathaniel Sukolsy, Johnette Sullivan, Duy Duc Vo, and Jaffrey Wishko. Certifications The following members have completed the certification process and are now certified by WMA: Nate Sulkowsy, Robbie Kenreuther, Pattie Dinsmore, Jeff Morris, Steve Pino, Sandra Kurjiaka, and Richard Blumenthal. Re-Certifications The following members have completed the recertification process: Deborah Diamond, Karen Zaugg, Laurie Slater, Kathleen Nichols, Vivien Sharples, Ron Feld, Don Desonier, John Nemes, Mark Kuciemba and Robin Low. ________________________________________ Articles of Interest Transforming Relationships Through Participatory Justice By The Law Commission of Canada Executive Summary (http://www.lcc.gc.ca/about/transform_4-en.asp ) Wherever there are people, the possibility of conflict exists. One of the ways we deal with conflict is through the justice system. But, over the past several decades, some Canadians have become dissatisfied with how the formal justice system responds to conflict. Conflicts are framed in legal language, rather than in terms of how individuals experience them; remedies often do not provide adequate redress for those who have been harmed; and the process is frequently time-consuming, costly and confusing. Frustration with an adversarial justice system has spurred the rise of alternatives such as victim–offender mediation, sentencing circles, community mediation and judge-led settlement conferencing. These alternatives are usually grouped under two broad categories: restorative justice and consensus-based justice. Restorative justice refers to a process for resolving crime and conflicts, one that focuses on redressing the harm to the victims, holding offenders accountable for their actions and engaging the community in a conflict resolution process. Consensus-based justice refers to innovative methods of resolving mostly non-criminal conflicts. Because the participation of the parties in the resolution of the dispute is an essential part of both restorative and consensus -based justice, they can both be considered forms of participatory justice. Over the past three years, the Law Commission of Canada has consulted with Canadians about meaningful methods of resolving conflicts. The Commission’s consultations revealed that Canadians want choices for resolving their conflicts, and that many want to actively participate in the conflict resolution process. The Commission believes that participatory justice— with its emphasis on the reconstruction of relationships through dialogue and on outcomes developed and agreed to by the disputants themselves — responds to this need. The challenge, as the Commis sion sees it, is for governments and civic institutions to find ways to support participatory justice without limiting its innovative potential. As such, this report has several objectives: • to clarify the underlying values and principles of both restorative justice and consensus- based justice by drawing from the literature, research and ex periences that these innovations have generated; • to challenge thinking about the classification and division of disputes for the purposes of fair process and just resolution, in particular the distinction between criminal and civil disputes; • to identify the remarkably similar concerns and critiques that have been expressed about restorative and consensus-based justice; • to identify best practices in participatory justice across Canada; • to address policy questions and explore the changes necessary to make restorative and consensus-based justice processes part of the mainstream of dispute resolution practice in Canada, without losing their creative elements; and • to make recommendations that enhance the capacity of the justice system to provide meaningful results for Canadians and to develop a culture of participatory justice in Canada. The Current Experience of Participatory Justice The failure of the punitive system to lower crime rates or contribute to greater public safety, and the disillusionment of victims and their families with the criminal justice system, are some of the factors behind the rise of restorative justice in Canada. Another important influence has been the emergence of the community justice movement, which seeks a return to local decision-making and community-building independent of the formal justice system. Restorative justice in Aboriginal communities, in many cases based on traditional healing and spiritual practices, has grown in response to an overwhelming need for emotional and spiritual healing, as well as out of the movement to assert community control over government functions. Many of the early restorative justice processes were developed without a specific legislative framework. However, within the past several years, a series of court decisions, legislative initiatives and policy statements have sought to provide parameters for the growth and development of restorative justice processes. The more common forms of restorative justice in use in Canada are: • Victim–offender mediation (VOM) and victim–offender reconciliation programs (VOR Ps). Among the earliest models of restorative justice, VOM and VOR Ps bring the offender a nd the victim voluntarily together in the presence of a trained mediator, either before sentencing or sometimes many years after incarceration. Most of these models complement the formal justice system: regardless of the outcome, the offender may receive a formal conviction, a criminal record and a traditional punishment. • Community and family group conferencing. A co-ordinator invites the family and friends of both the victim and the offender to participate in a discussion to explore appropriate ways to address the offending behaviour and desired outcomes for the family or community. The focus is usually somewhat broader than that of VOM and VOR Ps, since it involves an evaluation of the impact of the offence on a wider group. The group develops a plan for monitoring the future behaviour of the offender and sets out any reparative elements deemed necessary. • Sentencing circles. Operating in many Aboriginal communities in Canada, sentencing circles allow victims, offenders, community elders, other communit y members and court officials to discuss the consequences of a conflict and to explore ways of resolving it. Some sentencing circles operate within the formal justice system as an alternative to the conventional sentencing process. Sentencing circles are s ometimes also used for cases that are diverted from the justice system. • Community boards or panels. Made up of volunteers from the community, who formally meet with offenders and victims to facilitate a discussion of appropriate outcomes, community boards or panels are used either as a pre-charge diversion from the formal system or as an alternative means to determine an appropriate sentence after a guilty plea has been entered. • Other participatory processes. Restorative justice principles have influe nced the development of many school-based programs, including peer mediation training and anger management education. Work also takes place in prisons with incarcerated offenders, preparing them for reintegration into their communities. The Commission believes that most restorative justice initiatives share the following objectives and values. The Future of Mediation The Center for Accord By Nicholas Martin In this final article in our series, we will project ahead to what can be expected in the next few years, as ADR (alternative dispute resolution), and especially mediation, become more and more firmly established as the preferred means of resolving those disputes that we are unable to resolve on our own. What follows is based not in guarantees but on visible trends and the perspectives of the author, in whose opinion the time frame, more than the ultimate outcome, will be the primary variable. At a seminar for attorneys, entitled "Mediation Advocacy," a presiding judge emphasized that we will never again have adequate judicial resources to meet the needs of the community through the traditional means of the past; as our population continues to grow, we must find other dispute resolution approaches which effectively serve the public. Mediation was cited as the key option whose use will be ex panded. Nationwide, mediation has rapidly evolved into an increasingly widespread approach to settling lawsuits without the need for trial. What we can expect in the future is an increasing requirement by the courts that litigants attempt to resolve their disputes through mediation, settlement conference, and/or arbitration first, with trial reserved as a last resort. In this light, our law schools will continue to place an increasing emphasis on ADR as a central facet in the training of attorneys. We will see increasing use of it by attorneys, who will standardly advise their clients as to which approach will best serve their needs. Where "ADR" originally signified "alternative" dispute resolution, it will increasingly be seen in terms of appropriate dispute resolution, as the challenge shifts from whether or not to use ADR to which of the ADR options is most fitting for the particular dispute. The attorney of the future will see his or her participation in the mediation process as an integral aspect of the practice of law. He or she will find ample room to be a "zealous advocate" within a cooperative atmosphere, and the adversarial character so commonly associated with the practice of law will be reserved for when it is really needed. Community mediation centers will increase in numbers to serve all segments of the community, and will respond to a very broad range of conflicts, not only lawsuits. The public will become increasingly familiar with mediation as a viable option, and will seek mediation either before filing suit or as early as possible within the lawsuit process. The number of universities offering programs in conflict resolution will continue to expand, and more meaningful standards will evolve to define what qualifies the competent mediator. Professional ethics and standards of conduct will become more clearly defined, and grievance procedures will be more readily available. Dispute resolution clauses will become a standard aspect of most contracts, including divorce agreements. Arbitration clauses will be replaced by mediation clauses, with arbitration, in many cases, as the next resort. Legal insurance will not only cover the costs of ADR, but those insured will have a responsibility to mitigate ex penses by attempting ADR before going to trial. The current distinction between evaluative and facilitative mediation will be abandoned, as true mediation is increasingly understood to be, by definition, only a facilitative process. So-called "evaluative mediation," in which the mediator shares his or her professional experience, gives expert opinions and advice, and serves as an "advocate for the settlement" (in contrast to the parties), will be seen for the ox ymoron it has always been. Those in need of an evaluative process will seek ADR approaches which are clearly defined as such (moderated settlement conference or early neutral evaluation), and the term mediation will be reserved for what it really represents: a process designed to facilitate communication between the parties so that they may strengthen their mutual understanding, draw their own conclusions, and design their own settlement agreement. And as mediation becomes more and more the way of the future, more and more power will return to the people. http://www.4accord.com/article6.html Published in "Cascade Business News," June 18, 1997 Revised and updated February 23, 2000 _________________________________________________ News from Olympia Uniform Mediation Act Signed Into Law Governor Christine Gregoire has signed the Washington State Uniform Mediation Act into law, with an effective date off January 1, 2006. To read the full bill, click this link: http://www.leg.wa.gov/pub/billinfo/2005- 06/Htm/Bills/Senate%20Passed%20Legislature/5173-S.PL.htm . Every mediator needs to be familiar with the provisions of this new law. _________________________________________________ Short Stuff – “A Practical Guide for Resolving Government Contract Controversies, Second Edition" Most federal government controversies settle -- and many of those that don't, should. Over the past decade, the use of ADR has increased dramatically, with data showing successful resolution rates in excess of 90 percent. To meet the need for expert, practical information about employing Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) methodologies i n federal contracting disputes, the A BA Section of Public Contract Law has just published an updated second edition of "Alternative Dispute Resolution: A Practical Guide for Resolving Government Contract Controversies." This is a practical, clearly written guide that explains how to effectively use ADR techniques to settle government contract disputes and avoid the time and cost of litigation. Written by practitioners with broad experience in using ADR for government contract disputes, this updated and expanded book provides sound, up-to-date, and practical advice for the experienced ADR practitioner and is a valuable tool for those unfamiliar with the use of ADR. To learn more about this book, view the table of contents, and order online, go to http://www.abanet.org/abapubs/books/5390232.
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