Family Mediation – Your Children Will Thank You for It
What is Family Mediation in Texas?
- Family mediation is a confidential meeting between the parties and a neutral third party in which the mediator facilitates communications to help the parties settle their dispute.
- If the parties are represented by counsel, the attorneys will arrange for the mediation. If the parties are representing themselves (pro se), they should contact the mediator directly. Both parties must agree to mediation. Before the mediation begins, each party will be asked to sign an Agreement to Mediate.
- Generally the first meeting between the mediator and the parties takes between 3 and 4 hours. During this time, the parties will explore the issues that are the subject of disagreement. If an agreement is reached, the mediator will prepare a written Mediation Agreement containing the terms of the agreement to be filed with the court in the divorce or custody action. If no agreement is reached, the mediator will declare an impasse and notify the court that the mediation was not successful. If the parties reach agreement, the parties will sign a Mediated Settlement Agreement that will be filed with the court in the divorce action.
- Once the parties sign the agreement, it is binding and will not be modified by the court unless there are rare and extraordinary circumstances.
- The mediation process is confidential. The mediator will not be called to testify in the divorce or custody case. At the end of the mediation, the mediator will destroy his notes taken during the mediation.
Attorney Vince Vitale has been appointed to the National Board of Trial Advocacy’s Family Law Commission.
In addition to being board certified as a Civil Trial advocate since 1983, Vitale was appointed by the board’s president in 1992 to serve as Alaska state coordinator.
He is a member of a panel of 11 nationally recognized experts in the field of family law, working to assist the board in drafting the standards and examination requirements required of all applicants seeking certification as Family Law Specialists.
- 1972 – University of California, Davis, JD
- 1969 – University of California, Santa Cruz BA, Government
- 2019 – Retired from Alaska Bar Association
- 2013- 2014 – Consultant to Arizona State University School of Law Housing Advocacy Unit
- 2013- Reinstated to active practice by Alaska Supreme Court and Alaska Bar Association
- 2001-2013 Retired
- 1987-1993 Chairman, Alaska Judicial Conduct Commission
- 1975-2001 Private practice in Anchorage, Alaska-Law Offices of Vincent Vitale, PC
- 1974-1975 Associate with Johnson, Christiansen & Shamberg, Anchorage, Alaska
- 1973-1974 Assistant City Attorneys for the City of Anchorage
- 1972-1973 Alaska Legal Services Corporation (VISTA attorney)
- 2020 – Advanced Family & Divorce Mediation Training -Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code Section 154.052 as amended (30 hours)
- 2020 – Domestic Violence Mediation Training Section 154.052(b) Civil Practice and Remedies Code as Amended (4 hours)
- 2020 Basic Mediation Training Texas Civ. Prac & Remedies Code 154.052 (40 hours)
- 2012 – Pinal County Conciliation Child Protection Mediation Training Court (6 hours)
- 1991 –Alaska Bar Association CLE Divorce Mediation co-presenter (4 hours)
- 1990 – University of Idaho – one post grad custody mediation course – (24 hours)
- 2013 – Panelist “The Arizona Foundation for Legal Services Education (Arizona Bar Foundation) Foreclosure Relief Legal Services Training – “Practical Litigation Strategies” Sponsored by the Office of the Arizona Attorney General (6 hours)
- 2013 – CLE presenter on behalf of the ASU Civil Justice Clinic Sandra Day O’Connor School of Law: The Use of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act in Foreclosure and Loan Modification Litigation in Arizona (2 hours)
- 2003 How to Avoid Fee Arbitration – CLE presentation for Alaska Bar Association (2 hours)
- 2002 Co-presenter on behalf of the Alaska Bar Association with a representative of the Alaska Psychological Association in a continuing education program on ethical issues for psychologists in custody litigation (6 hours)
- Co-presenter in one-day mandatory training session for Alaska marriage and family counsellors on legal and ethical issues for family counsellors in domestic violence cases sponsored by the State of Alaska Division of Occupational Licensing
|2018||Cyber-Bullying: Advocating for Survivors of Family Violence and Sexual Assault
· Legal Rights of Sexual Survivors: Advanced Safety Planning
· Texas Board of Professional Counselors Best Practice of Domestic Violence Orders
|2018||Child Abuse Investigations/Trauma in Children
· Predator in the Family
· Case Study and Play Therapy
|2012||Association of Family and Conciliation Courts
·10th Annual Symposium on Child Custody Investigations Accounting for Domestic Violation in Child Custody Investigations in Practice
· Research and Practice: Relocation Disputes
· Practical Ways to Apply Alienation Research in Custody Cases
· Evaluating Families with Young Children
· Crafting Developmentally Sensitive Plans for Young Children
|2011-2019||Volunteer training on domestic violence, child abuse, and neglect
|2012||Arizona Children Association Gang Prevention/Substance Abuse
|1990||Individual Training with Judith Wallerstein, co-author of Second Chances: Men, Women, and Children a Decade After Divorce
2013 – The Use of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act in Foreclosure and Loan Modification Litigation in Arizona; non-peer reviewed CLE materials prepared in conjunction with the Arizona State University Civil Justice Clinic, Sandra Day O’Connor School of Law 2013 CLE.
2012 – The Claimers: A Tale of Skullduggery on the Backstretch with co-author Judith M. Rich. Published by horseracingpublications.com
1982 – Co-author- Caveat Venditor Comes of Age in Alaska: A Plaintiff’s Guide to Defective Home Litigation, 11 UCLA Alaska L. Rev. 57 (1981-1982)
Tried over 225 civil matters to judgment or final order. Tried six jury trials to verdict. Lead counsel in twenty appeals before the Alaska Supreme Court. United States Circuit Court of Appeals (United States v. Fluker, 543 F.2d 709 (9th Cir. 1976)) Successful appeal at the United States Supreme Court (United States v. Clarke, 445 U.S. 253 (1980) Court-appointed attorney/guardian ad litem in first Alaska case addressing a same-sex couple custody dispute (S.N.E. v. R.L.B., 699 P.2d 875 (Alaska 1985)
|2012||Presidential Volunteer Service Award (Gold)
Presented for work done for Pinal County, Arizona CASA
|1983–2001||Certified Civil Trial Advocate, National Board of Trial Advocacy|