Innovative and determined West Hartford, Connecticut divorce trial lawyers who explore every opportunity for mediated settlement
Effective services provided by an experienced family law team
Flaherty Legal Group primarily handles family law matters. The domestic relations lawyers at the firm are experienced in litigation, mediation, arbitration and collaboration methods for resolving divorce and post-divorce disputes.
Mediation vs. trial in divorce matters
In divorce matters, trials are expensive and destructive and should only be undertaken as a last resort. The system has a number of mediation alternatives built into it. Before a case can proceed to trial, the parties must engage in at least two levels of mediation. The first level is called the special masters pretrial mediation program. Experienced matrimonial lawyers volunteer their time to serve as special masters which has been a very successful mediation program. Parties and counsel present their cases to two special master attorneys unrelated to the case. The two attorneys, usually a male and a female attorney, will review the parties’ proposed orders and statements of history and will hear each party’s positions on his or her case. The two attorneys will then make a recommendation to the parties providing an independent view concerning an appropriate disposition of the parties’ case. Many cases are resolved at this preliminary mediation level. If they are not resolved, there is a second level of mediation called the judicial pretrial. In that process, the parties present to a judge of the superior court their respective views of their case and a judge provides his or her independent recommendation concerning resolution of the case.
After these two levels of mediation, the issues between the parties are usually narrowed and focused and capable of being resolved by further negotiation.
The court will also invite parties back for a second or even third judicial pretrial if the court thinks that such a process would be useful.
Private mediators are also available to further refine the analysis.
The extensive discussions and negotiations provided by the above mediation procedures are usually quite successful in resolving cases short of litigation. There are those few cases however, that are unresolvable by any means other than a trial. The court will not schedule a trial until every effort to resolve the case short of trial is exhausted.
Even in cases where trials are required, the mediation process does focus the issues and generally limits the issues between the parties.
The mediation negotiation process requires give and take between open minded parties working in good faith. It is well worth the effort.
The lawyers at Flaherty Legal Group, LLC all volunteer their time to serve as special masters for the mediation process. They also volunteer their time to sit as special masters for the regional high conflict docket. Flaherty Legal Group lawyers volunteer their time because they believe in the mediation process, but at the same time each is a highly skilled trial lawyer capable of trying complicated financial and custodial matters.
The courtroom is a more suitable forum for some cases. For example, mediation may be inappropriate if one partner refuses to compromise or has been abusive in a relationship. The aggressive litigators at Flaherty Legal Group are tough advocates for their clients. In the courtroom, they strive to attain the results to which their clients believe they are entitled.
Representation of children
Flaherty Legal Group is dedicated to helping children through difficult times. The team can act as:
- Guardian ad Litem (GAL) represents minor children in Connecticut family courts, serves as witness to the court and makes recommendations as to what is in the best interests of the children. A GAL conducts investigations that include meeting with the parents and children and gathering information from third-party sources.
- Attorney for minor children (AMC) represents minor children in Connecticut family courts. While charged with advocating for the children’s position, the AMC also keeps in mind what is best for the children. The AMC participates in all aspects of the family court proceedings and may present evidence and witnesses if necessary.
Attorneys Pamela M. Magnano and Sandi B. Girolamo have completed coursework and training to be approved as Guardians ad Litem in Connecticut.
Full-service family law firm in Connecticut
The firm’s attorneys have more than 50 years of combined experience guiding clients through all types of domestic relations issues, including:
Contact a dedicated Connecticut family law firm
Flaherty Legal Group is located in West Hartford and represents clients throughout Connecticut in all family law matters.
Call Flaherty Legal Group at (860) 904-2034 or contact the law firm online to schedule an appointment.