Parent coordination is a child-focused alternative dispute resolution process in which a mental health or legal professional with mediation training and experience assists high conflict parents to implement their parenting plan by facilitating the resolution of their disputes in a timely manner, educating parents about children’s needs, and with prior approval of the parties and/or the court, making decisions within the scope of the court order or appointment contract. The overall objective of parenting coordination is to assist high conflict parents. Parenting coordination is a quasi-legal, mental health, alternative dispute resolution (ADR) process that combines assessment, education, case management, conflict management and sometimes decision-making functions. The Parenting Coordinator’s role is most frequently reserved for those high conflict parents who have demonstrated their longer-term inability or unwillingness to make parenting decisions on their own, to comply with parenting agreements and orders, to reduce their child-related conflicts, and to protect their children from the impact of that conflict.
Because the parenting coordinator makes recommendations and/or decisions for the parties and possibly reports to the court, the parenting coordinator should be appointed by and be responsible to the Court.. The Parenting Coordinator shall maintain impartiality in the process of parenting coordination. Impartiality means freedom from favoritism or bias in word, action, or appearance, and includes a commitment to assist all parties, as opposed to any one individual. While Shelly is an attorney, in her role as Parenting Coordinator, she does not serve as either party’s legal counsel nor does she provide either party with legal advice. Shelly is regularly appointed as a Parenting Coordinator by the Court
As a Parenting Coordinator, Shelly utilizes the “Guidelines for Parenting Coordination” developed by the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts Task Force on Parenting Coordination. Available at https://www.afccnet.org/Portals/0/Guidelines
If you are involved in a high conflict custody matter, the appointment of a Parenting Coordinator may assist in reducing harmful conflict and in promoting the best interests of the children. Please contact The Cooley Law Firm at (702) 265-4505 for assistance.
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