Online Mediation Checklist

Mediation Rules of the Road

I have provided virtual remote mediation for many years to accommodate clients living in different locations. And I have learned a lot about what makes for a successful Zoom mediation.

Mediating stressful conflict occurs best when you are comfortable, free of distractions, and have what you need to keep yourself calm. To that end, prepare by following the checklist below.

Online Mediation Preparation Checklist

  • Technology

    • Familiarity with Zoom (click here for Zoom tutorials)
    • Fully charged device and be near a power source (computer recommended, if available)
    • Set the view to “Gallery View”
    • If private sessions occur have something to do (read, work, etc.) while waiting
    • Ensure there is a strong Wi-Fi connection
    • Test starting video and audio settings prior to call (feel free to request a test call with me)
  • Location

    Where can I have the most privacy? My bedroom? My office? My car? The basement?

  • Timing

    How can I avoid needing to multi-task? Should I cook before or after? Can I clear my work calendar for two hours?

  • Comfort -- Physically and Emotionally

    What do I need to be comfortable? Can I fill up my water bottle in advance? Do I need something to fidget with? If I’m living with my spouse should we be together? In separate rooms on different devices?

  • Preparation

    Should I have paper and pen to take notes? Have I printed out forms that I need? Do I have a calculator available? Tissues?

When Mediating Online, Avoid…

  • Being too Informal

    It can be easy to loosen boundaries in the comfort of your own home. Remember, mediation typically occurs in a formal conference room — aim to present yourself as you would in my office!

  • Driving

    Believe it or not, zoom driving happens. It’s dangerous! And distracting. If your car is the most private spot make sure you’re parked.

  • Drinking Alcohol

    In the comfort of your home it might be tempting to have a drink while mediating — if you wouldn’t do it in my office, don’t do it at home during mediation. It will interfere with your decision-making and compromise the process.

  • Inflammatory / Intimidating Backgrounds

    Do not fiddle with weapons, cut vegetables with a sharp knife, have a photo of your new significant other in the background, or expose the other party to things that will increase tension, stress, and good-faith negotiation.

A Word About Kids and Online Divorce Mediation During Covid-19

Mediating from home is hard, particularly for parents. Remember, it is in your kids’ best interest they are not exposed to:

  • Financial matters between parents
  • Court and legal matters between parents
  • Conflict, tension, and arguing between their parents

Whenever possible make sure your kids are engaged in activity out of ear shot of you. If your kids need a check-in or walk in the room let me know and we can take a brief break.

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If you have any questions about our mediation services please send us a message.