The Mediation Center

The Mediation Center, located in Rochester NY, provides couples and families the opportunity to work out their differences in a safe, private environment. Specializing in divorce/separation mediation and family mediation, it is our goal to create mutual agreements that allow and encourage positive relationships for the future. Families come in all shapes and sizes. Whether you are separating, divorcing or need help working through a difficult problem within a relationship, mediation can help.


The professionals at The Mediation Center are committed to continuing education to ensure the highest standards for our clients. We require each of our mediators to complete in-service training annually. All of our mediators adhere to the New York State Council on Divorce Mediation code of ethics and practice. All of our practitioners are members of the New York State Council on Divorce Mediation and the Rochester Association of Family Mediators. Our mediators are also certified by the Center for Dispute Settlement to mediate cases referred by the unified court system.

What is Mediation?

Mediation is the process by which clients sit down with a neutral third party, the mediator, to reach a mutual agreement. Mediation is the blending of self-determination and informed decision making; two guiding principles of the mediation process. Mediation can be used for issues involving separation, divorce, domestic partnerships, family concerns and marital/partner disagreements. Other benefits also result from using mediation.

  • Pro family– benefits the children and parties by reducing conflict
  • Decision making - You must make all the same decisions in mediation as in a court based process
  • Less expensive – than traditional divorce
  • Faster – takes less time than a litigated divorce
  • Empowering – You have control – allows you to control the decisions that affect your life, not an attorney or judge
  • Working together – parties problem solve together with the guidance of the mediator to meet the needs of your individual situation and come up with an agreement that is best for everyone involved
  • Facilitated by a mediator – who has specific training who will facilitate the process between the parties involved
  • Confidential – meetings and decisions are kept private. No public disclosure of financial or personal matters, unlike in court
  • Up to you – mediation is completely voluntary
  • One size does not fit all – every family and situation is different. Mediation allows you to customize the process and an agreement that works best for your specific situation
  • For anybody – who wants less conflict, better communication and cooperation

What is a Mediator?

A mediator is a neutral third party professional trained in conflict resolution who will facilitate the mediation and guide you through the process. There are many decisions you will need to make. You will want to make good choices and know your options. The mediator assists the parties in gaining the information needed to make informed choices throughout the process.

The mediator guides the mediation process. The decisions are made by the clients. The mediator makes sure all opinions are heard and that there is a good balance of power in the process between the clients. The mediator remains neutral throughout the process and makes referrals to other professionals (attorneys, financials, therapists, etc.) when needed. The mediator works with people and guides them to cooperation and collaboration even when people may get “stuck” on a difficult issue. The mediator ensures that all vital issues are covered within the process and allows the expression of emotions/anxieties in a safe environment to aid the clients in recognizing issues and reaching mutually acceptable solutions.

What is the Mediation Process?

Mediation is a step by step process, that is driven by you, the clients. A typical divorce/separation mediation lasts for 3-4 sessions. You and your spouse/partner sit down with one mediator in a private, comfortable office and work through all the decisions including a parenting plan, if you have children, equitable distribution of marital assets/debts and support issues for child and spouse, if needed. Fees are based on a sliding scale according to your income and are paid on a per session basis. We do not charge a retainer fee. Mediation gives you the ownership and the power to make the decisions that are so important to your future. Mediation recognizes that your relationship is in transition and that there needs to be positive communication and cooperation to move forward.

In the first consultation, the mediation process is explained and any questions will be explored and answered. The following session’s content will be discussed and decisions will be made by the couple regarding issues such as division of property, parenting arrangements, child support and other financial issues. Step by step the parties will make decisions about how they want the future to be and come up with an agreement called a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). The process considers the needs of all family members. Once the parties have reached agreements on the issues and the MOU is drafted, they are encouraged to consult individual attorneys for review. The process moves at a pace decided by the couple that can ensure good decision making and processing.