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Author Topic: Mediation Travel Costs  (Read 828 times)

rltfox

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Mediation Travel Costs
« on: Mar 10, 2005, 11:16:38 AM »
Dear Socrateaser,

Our case is in Washington where we both reside.  We are in the process of revising our parenting plan, but the current plan states "parties shall split mediation costs 50/50". Since CP moved 140 miles away we have attempted to alternate mediation between our two cities. There are no mediation facilities available anywhere between.

CP is reluctant to come to my city because it is inconvenient for her & will just not show up. Yesterday CP initiated mediation regarding Summer Visitation in her city even though the last mediation was also held in her city. CP interferes with Summer Visitation every year, so attending mediation will be in everyone's best interest.

I am not trying to be difficult, but I think that 50/50 costs should apply to travel costs as well.  If we were in fact alternating between cities the costs would even out, but that isn't happening.  It will cost $50, not including travel time & wear/tear to my vehicle. Additionally I do not want to set a precedent of only attending mediation in her city.

Question:

1. Can I stipulate to mediation center I will only attend mediation there if CP pays for 50% of my travel expenses ($.35/mile)?

2. If CP refuses what right do I have to insist then that she attend mediation in my city?

3. If I give in & attend mediation in her city without splitting travel expenses set a precedent that ALL future mediation be held in her city?

Thanks for your help!

rltfox


socrateaser

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RE: Mediation Travel Costs
« Reply #1 on: Mar 10, 2005, 12:36:48 PM »
>Question:
>
>1. Can I stipulate to mediation center I will only attend
>mediation there if CP pays for 50% of my travel expenses
>($.35/mile)?

The question is: in what county was the original order re mediation entered by the court. It is in that county that mediation should take place. If your county is so large that both of your residence cities are within the county, then my argument doesn't hold.

In which case, the order states 50/50 and it is reasonable to assume, especially for a "mediation," which is by nature, supposed to be an amicable attempt to resolve your dispute, that transportation costs should also be split 50/50.

I would inform your ex and the mediator in the same letter that you will attend at her location based on the other parent crediting you the reasonable cost of your transportation to the other city as part of the mediation cost (this assumes that mediation will cost more than your transportation).

Then, if she refuses to pay, then you have a choice: you can either show up, and then file a motion with the court to obtain equitable reimbursement for your out-of-pocket costs, or, you can state that you attempted mediation and the other party refused to bargain in good faith over the transportation costs incident to mediation, and then, having satisfied your obligation to attempt to mediate, you can file a motion to have the court resolve the matter.

 

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