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Alternate Dispute Resolution for Divorced Parents

Sep 29, 2014 | Written by: Diana N. Fredericks, Esq. |

On Sept. 6, an article was published in the New York Times titled, “How Divorced Parents Lost Their Rights”.  The article describes, in part, the frustration about the willingness of a court to intervene in parental disputes, such as payment for college, where the parents are divorced, but not for married parents who disagree.  

While this author neither agrees or disagrees with the article, it is a reminder of frequent conversations with clients who want to know why they, as divorced parents, are being required to address the issue of college and why they are required to pay for college when perhaps they cannot afford to, were excluded from the college selection process, do not agree with the choice of school, etc. 

You may also recall the recent news coverage of a teenager suing her parents for child support and contribution to college.  While this matter thankfully resolved itself by agreement, it left many family law practitioners and parents concerned and questioning the results. 

As the NYT article correctly points out, there are a myriad of alternate dispute resolutions such as mediation, arbitration and collaborative practice that should be utilized whenever possible to amicably resolve disputes. 

Diana Fredericks, Esq., is a partner at Gebhardt & Kiefer, where she focuses her practice on family law issues, including post judgment disputes relating to college issues.  Ms. Fredericks is also collaboratively trained.  If you wish to discuss a potential family law issue, please contact Ms. Fredericks at 908-735-5161.