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Is it recommended that I bring in exhibits to court ordered mediation with Family Court?

San Jose, CA |

I was told that Mediators can choose whether to review exhibits that are submitted. Would you recommend that I bring in police incident reports? Is this considered evidence? Are mediators able to review reports that may not be admissible with a judge such as a forensic interview? Are they interested in violations of the current court order?

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Attorney answers 6


You can show whatever you want in mediation, but keep in mind that if you are mediating in Santa Clara County, this is a non-recommending county, which means that the only thing that can come out of it is either an agreement or a memo to the court stating that you were not able to agree.

So if you feel that the evidence will convince the *other parent* then go ahead. If you're trying to convince the mediator, you might even get them to see things your way, but if the *other parent* still does not agree, then you will only get the "non-agreement" memo.

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Whatever you believe is in your favor you need to get it in front of the mediator and do it far before the mediation date. It gives this individual a option to review the materials before you meet in mediation. All these factors push the case towards a favorable resolution for you.

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Yes, couldn't hurt. Unless they are exhibits you can use for impeachment at trial.

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It is important that you clearly and concisely present your case to the mediator. Be sure to include any information that is pertinent to the issues at hand, but be careful not to overwhelm the mediator with documents or information that are not at issue.


Generally Santa Clara County's Family Court mediators do not take documents. During assessments or screenings, documents are accepted. If it is a private mediator, he or she will also take documents. You want to ask your mediator. But it is generally a good idea to take all of your documents to them for their consideration and review in coming up with an assessment. Just remember to take at least one extra copy for the other side and a copy for yourself. You also need a proof of service saying you gave the other side copies of documents you are submitting to your evaluator. It is important the evaluator know all of the relevant facts surroundings your custody dispute.


In mediation, you want to persuade the other side, not the mediator.
If exhibits assist you in this goal, sure.