A Common Ground Mediation

Empowering people to resolve conflict and improve relationships

Meet Lisa and Stacey

Certified Mediators in Bozeman, Montana

Lisa Nesbitt Morrell

Stacey Herries

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Our approach towards mediation helps us guide our clients to feel empowered in their decision-making process and obtain a resolution that best fits their needs while addressing the roots of the conflict. 

 

Stacey and Lisa's path as mediators began after over 40 collective years of working with kids and families in education. Their experience with conflict-resolution, understanding family dynamics, youth brain development, and communication contributes to their desire to help those in conflict achieve resolution and move toward peaceful and less complicated life goals.  

 
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Why Mediation?

Whether your conflict involves:

  • Staying Married

  • Divorce

  • Parenting Plans

  • Education-Related Disputes

  • Landlord-Tenant

  • Property Settlement

  • Workplace

  • Community/Social Justice 

 

Mediation produces an opportunity for those affected by the conflict to create a resolution as those directly involved know their problems, needs, and desired outcomes best. 

 

Led by a trained, neutral, certified mediator, conflict resolution can achieve a better outcome for involved parties than a decision made by a court or jury.

Benefits of Mediation Include

Control

Our clients control their outcome with the final decision which is then enforced by the court.

Privacy

Our mediations are private and confidential. Nothing discussed during mediation can be used in court against the other party.

Location/Time/Stress

Meetings are planned according to your schedule and time frame, reducing the stress and interruptions of day-to-day life. 

Mediation often takes less time and money than court proceedings and can end in a single day or through a series of shorter meetings.

Through mediation, our clients receive effective communication strategies that foster better relationships for the future.

Improved Relationships
Efficient & Cost Effective

Parties are happier and more likely to comply with results that they agree upon themselves rather than from a judge or jury.

Better Results & Compliance
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How Much Does Mediation Cost?

An initial mediation fee of $500* payable prior to mediation.

This includes the following services: 

Introductory phone call 

Intake questionnaire and evaluation

Neutral facility fee

Filing of Mediation Agreement with the Court 

Two hour mediation session 
Should the mediation exceed two hours, each additional hour is $150 and payable immediately following the session.

*This is a general cost and there may be other expenses accrued such as travel expenses, etc. This will be discussed with the parties beforehand. 
 

 
What to Expect During Mediation

Stage 1. Agreeing to Mediate:

The decision to mediate can be made before or after the conflict arises in civil cases. Mediation can either be voluntary or mandated by the court (such as in the case of marriage dissolution) . With or without an attorney, the parties can mutually agree to have their conflict settled through mediation.

 

Stage 2. Preparations:

Before mediation proceedings begin, the mediator will make sure that the parties are well prepared. Mediators will gather information as well as answer any questions or concerns and parties will complete an online intake questionnaire prior to meeting.  Both parties must be in a negotiating mood, be honest with themselves and others, and willing to compromise to achieve an effective mediation.

 

Stage 3. Conducting Sessions:

Because we practice a facilitative model, it is important that we begin each session with all parties present and in the same room unless there are extenuating circumstances. There may be a need to caucus which means the mediators will meet privately with each party during a session. Since the proceeding is personal and confidential in nature, whatever is said during mediation will not be used against the other party in court and the mediator cannot be called to testify.

Stage 4. Communicate:

Since the parties are most familiar with their own interests and priorities, they will be the ones to decide the outcome of the case, not a judge or jury. Mediators will be without judgment and impartial, will help guide the process, and not offer any legal advice. As parties need to work as a team to reach an agreement, communication plays a crucial role throughout the mediation process.

 

Stage 5. Negotiate:

The primary purpose of coming together and holding a mediation meeting is to resolve an issue so that parties are able to move forward with their lives. Mediation provides an opportunity to resolve conflicts efficiently, cost-effectively, and in a timely manner as the court system is overloaded and attorneys can be expensive. It’s up to the mediator to ensure that both sides are heard so they can come up with a solution.

Stage 6. Mediation Agreement:

The parties have finally come to an agreement and the resolution is placed in writing, which is known as the mediation agreement. Depending on the circumstances during mediation, parties may achieve a full resolution during one session, a partial resolution, or need to come back to continue the process. Mediation agreements are enforceable by the court and the terms and conditions are legally binding once filed. Parties may want to seek limited representation with an attorney once the agreement is completed.

 
Our Mediation Testimonials

Marriage Mediation

Our relationship has been thriving since we met up with you lovely ladies! We have been communicating more (and) being more aware of each other's feelings. We have actually talked about possibly meeting up with you guys again because we had such a great experience.  The mediation was a definite relationship saver.

Divorce Mediation

Had I known then what I know now, I would have mediated my divorce. My ex spent 60k on attorney fees over two years, and in the end we came up with an unsatisfying agreement which left us bitter and angry. I believe coming to the table would have resulted in a healthier relationship and better outcome for our family.

 
When Do Mediations Take Place?

We understand how busy life can be with families and jobs; as a result, we are available to work around your schedule. We can conduct sessions during the week, on weekends, and evenings. 

Your Mediation Starts Here

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Contact Info

Stacey Herries

(406) 600-7128

(406) 580-8740

Lisa Nesbitt Morrell

 
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