Judicial Settlement-Seeking in Parenting Disputes: Consensus and Controversy

“Judicial Settlement-Seeking in Parenting Disputes: Consensus and Controversy.” (2012) Conflict Resolution Quarterly, Vol. 29, No. 3, pp. 309-332.

33 Pages Posted: 5 Oct 2010 Last revised: 2 Mar 2013

See all articles by Noel Semple

Noel Semple

University of Windsor Faculty of Law

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Date Written: June 3, 2011

Abstract

The judicial role in child custody and visitation disputes has traditionally been understood as one of authoritative decision-making. However this new empirical research suggests that many family court judges prioritize the pursuit of voluntary settlement in pre-trial conferences, using evaluative and facilitative mediation techniques. Drawing on qualitative interviews with judges and other family law professionals in Toronto and New York City, this article identifies points of consensus and controversy among settlement-seeking family judges. Despite the general support for settlement-seeking, there are substantial differences of opinion regarding coercion, due process, and the meaning of the best interests of the child standard.

Keywords: Dispute resolution, mediation, parenting, custody

Suggested Citation

Semple, Noel, Judicial Settlement-Seeking in Parenting Disputes: Consensus and Controversy (June 3, 2011). “Judicial Settlement-Seeking in Parenting Disputes: Consensus and Controversy.” (2012) Conflict Resolution Quarterly, Vol. 29, No. 3, pp. 309-332., Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1687268

Noel Semple (Contact Author)

University of Windsor Faculty of Law ( email )

401 Sunset Ave.
Windsor, Ontario N9B 3P4
Canada

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