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WHAT OUR CLIENTS SAY


We receive many letters from our past clients. Here are just a few from clients who have agreed to share their opinions with people interested in divorce mediation.

I entered the office of Divorce Mediation Institute of Utah, a little nervous because I didn’t know what to expect from mediation. However, after meeting the Mediators, I was quickly put at ease. They were both very “down to earth” people who went out of their way to make sure Arne and I were comfortable. They opened up to us about their own experiences which gave me freedom to be myself and express myself.

I was also impressed with their expertise and knowledge of Utah Laws and their willingness to explain all options which were open to Arne and I so that we could make the best decisions. Each time, after the meeting ended, I felt that the Mediators cared about what was best for our family. They seemed to empathize with us about what we were going through. Overall, everything went very smoothly. It was pleased. I would recommend Mediators because of their professionalism and the warmth and care they show to their clients.

Cindy Anderson




I was getting divorced in the month of September and was interested in mediation rather than using a lawyer. I had talked to someone in my neighborhood that had use mediation in their divorce. What he told me was that mediation was less expensive than using lawyers and if we could be civil with each other, it would take much less time to finalize the divorce. I heard more and more about this form of getting divorced as I talked with more people who had gone through it themselves. I heard good things about mediation.

At our first appointment I was very anxious, nervous, and nauseated!!! Divorce is not easy, and no matter how we accomplish it, it's not fun. After meeting with Dave and Patricia, I did feel better and my ex-husband and I agreed that this was the way we wanted to handle the divorce.

By the middle of November we were finished with everything, other than waiting for the courts to process everything. It was the first of February that the divorce was actually final.

Mediation made a yucky, terrible, and sad situation bearable. The thought of lawyers fighting back and forth was something I am glad we did not have to contend with. A waste of time and money, and hurtful "he said, she said" conversations. I like that in mediation, you confront each other with whatever problem you can possibly foresee. You figure it out right then and there, and decide on some kind of a solution, But, I didn't feel rushed. I knew that if I didn't feel good about a decision, I could think about it during that week, and come back to our appointment and discuss again.

David and Patricia were awesome to work with. Professional, realistic, and also showed me that as time went on things would get better. There are so many things to worry about! I would add to my list of concerns and question each day, (or middle of the night) and then bring it tin to our appointment. Each week I left the appointment feeling like things were being taken care of, and also that we were given correct and sufficient information about family law, finances, etc

In divorce there is not a winner. I felt that in mediation we were both given a chance to express our feelings and concerns, and then come to an agreement that would be best for our kids, and us as parents.

If a friend of family member has the need to go through divorce, I will definitely recommend mediation as the way to accomplish it.

Steph Callicott




To Whom It May Concern:

I have recently gone through a divorce and had the opportunity to work with Shirley Pappin and David Cross as our mediators. Despite this being the most difficult time in my life, Shirley and David were very informative, professional, compassionate and understanding. I was afraid that I wouldn't have the protection I needed while working through all of the financial issues as well as child custody issues.

My fears were soon put to ease. Shirley and David were very knowledgeable about all divorce issues and they helped my ex-husband and I get through child support, child custody, co-parenting and alimony issues in a quick and friendly manner. It gives me great comfort to know that none of the issues were left uncovered.

We were well educated regarding all of the divorce issues by the time we finished mediation. It also gives me comfort to know that I can return to mediation at any time if changes are needed.

I felt I wanted control over what happened with our children, not a judge to have that control. We, as parents, know what is best for our kids. My ex-husband and I were able to work through a co-parenting plan and we have a bright outlook on the future and were able to even stay friends. I know our children will be better off in the future because of this. The friendly atmosphere helped me feel at ease and I feel helped us reach decisions that worked for our individual needs and desires.

Shelley Terry




A quick note to give you guys and gals the "atta boy" in thanks for your services. I am not one that normally sends notes, but when you so graciously followed up on my little problem, it made a positive impression. Too man companies blow people off, especially after being paid.

I remember you asking me for some type of follow-up on ways you could improve your services. First let me point out the positives:

  • Overall cost savings versus the alternative of using an attorney is a no-brainer;
  • The coed team approach was very positive. This helped my ex-wife deal with the situation somewhat easier.
  • Preparation (workbook) helped organize. Tell everyone to complete the book.
  • Multiple meetings versus and all day event made sense;
  • BOTH your experiences, helped tremendously.

    Suggestions:
     
  • Write down every detail (my ex-wife has changed her mind on a couple of items that could have been spelled out in detail).
  • I felt you guys could have been a little firmer when you thought someone was off base on a particular issue.

    My overall impression is very positive and I highly recommend your company to others. Best of luck in helping couples through this major ordeal!

    Bryan Goins




    When I was going through my divorce I was terrified. I had so many questions. I had been a stay at home mom for thirteen years and wanted to know what my legal rights were as far as child support and alimony. I talked to a few people but didn't get any solid answers so I looked into hiring an attorney. My husband at the time had hired an attorney and I was served with the most awful papers that were so unfair. I could not believe what I was reading. My husband said that his lawyer told him, "that this is the way it is done."

    We have three children together and it was difficult to maintain a good relationship for the kids. I knew there must be a better way than battling for what seemed the lawyers thought each of us could get and not necessarily what was equitable or even what we wanted.

    A friend told me about mediation, so we went to the free orientation to check them out. I felt very comfortable in the meeting; it just made a lot of sense. During the mediation they helped my husband to understand what I was possibly going through and they helped me realize what he was going through. They considered what each of us wanted for an outcome and balanced that with what the law suggested and required, an we were able to come up with solutions that worked for both of us.

    We in the process both felt that we were able to start moving on, much faster and in a healthier way. I am so grateful to them, I can't imagine what we would of put our kids through by battling it out through litigation. A divorce is both emotionally and financially very difficult. We both felt that in this regard, this was the best decision we ever made.

    Lou Harmon




    Mediation?? I would do it again. Why? Divorce is a terrible thing to go through, regardless of the circumstances. Here you are-deciding to part with whom you thought was your best, life-long friend, not in death, but in shattered dreams. Emotionally, I had enough challenges just dealing with the concept of divorce, let alone the prospect of enduring a nasty court battle.

    I didn't want to take advantage of my former spouse; I wanted what was "fair." I also didn't view the idea of paying an attorney thousands of dollars as the alternative of choice. I wanted to preserve as many of the assets we were splitting in order to pass them on to our children.

    What I felt mediation did for me:
  • Allowed us to address each other in an neutral environment
  • Allowed us to have all discussions monitored, for clarity, for respect of both parties, and for checks with reality
     
  • Allowed us to express our concerns and feelings
     
  • Permitted and exchange of ideas, and alternative plans without the delay that attorneys would have caused
     
  • Allowed us to reach a settlement in a relatively short period of time
     
  • Allowed issues important to either of us to be discussed

    I appreciated the manner that the sessions were structured.   The "caucus" sessions were helpful in keeping us on task, and to ground our thinking about what a judge might decide in the circumstance. We reached what was acceptable through negotiation. We did not always see things eye-to-eye, but with the mediators asistance, other points of view were explained patiently. Now that it is all over and done with I have few regrets. Maybe going another route might have yielded me greater financial compensation, but in the long run that would not have been worth the additional emotional expense.

    Sheree Andersen






    I wanted to write you and thank you for your efforts in our divorce. When I realized divorce was inevitable I was depressed just thinking of the traditional way of handling it. The thought of two lawyers fighting it out in court supposedly on our behalf was too much to think about.

    With all the other things on your mind at a time like this I knew there had to be different way. I came across an advertisement in the paper that told of divorce mediation. It intrigued me enough to call the number. After the initial consultation I realized that this would be better than "the other way".

    The advantage I could see was that it would be considerably faster and a lot cheaper. With that in mind we started mediation. I wont say it was easy. It wasn't. Any time you end a marriage of considerable length its emotional and difficult. The advantage is that there where two mediators, male and female to get both perspectives. Because this was something never before experienced your guidance was appreciated.

    You were able to guide us according to legal matters and inform us about options we didn't know existed. Your frankness was sometimes startling but needed. You kept the focus where it should have been and on the topic at hand.

    I would recommend anyone considering such an important decision of divorce to give mediation a chance. As you once said. "Its not a matter of if you'll negotiate, but when and how." Through mediation we were able to make important decisions concerning our children, finances, and our future apart. Thanks again for your efforts,

    Sincerely

    Scott Allred




    Many times I was certain that mine would be the only case that could not settle out of court. Naturally, I wanted the mediators to see and BE on my side to help me negotiate a "better deal," however, I could rarely tell when their statements, guided questions and mediation techniques were for or against me. I felt this was very professional. The consistently remained calm, professional, and fair, even in very tense moments. When I let THEM guide the mediation process, it progressed much quicker, smoother, and equitable for all.

    They consistently fostered a positive atmosphere where winning battles, bringing up past baggage and unprofessional behavior were not appropriate. Male and Female mediators create the perfect combination of velvet and steel. They are smooth, kind and understanding yet are able to purposefully guide your case to an equitable agreement. Their style of mediation is ahead of its time. It is likely that this wave of dispute resolution will greatly impact the costly and lengthy process of traditional divorce proceedings.

    When circumstances in my marriage made it impossible for it to continue successfully, I was devastated with the thought of going through a divorce. The thoughts of fighting in court and the negative wounds I had seen created by that process in the lives of other people made me ill. I read about Divorce Mediation in a small newspaper and hoped it was an answer to a prayer. As I went through the process, I found that it truly was a positive answer to a negative situation.

    From the first visit, which I attended alone, I was impressed with the warm and supportive climate in the office. Having both a male and female advocate made so much sense, since there are two sides to look at in all issues, when one is honestly looking at reality. The ground rules that were set when we both went in the first time we enforceable and fair.

    In the discussions we had at the round table, respect was maintained for opinions, even when there was disagreement, people listened without interruption. Issues were clarified so that there was understanding even when there was not agreement. I saw high level communication skills being used by the male mediators as we went through the mediation process. And they led the two of us to that level of communication on the topics needed to negotiate the issues of the divorce settlement.

    I was also impressed with their ability to remain objective and to think of alternate solutions, to remain involved but detached enough that they were objective.

    Difficult experiences were a part of the process I went through on the road to the divorce, but through it all, I felt the support of the mediators. The financial cost was miniscule compared to hiring two lawyers and consulting with them. The emotional cost of fighting in court through a third part set of lawyers was eliminated. The mental cost of agonizing over "he said-she said" was nonexistent as we sat at the round table and issues were mediated to a solution.

    I highly recommend Divorce Mediation to anyone in a similar situation.

    Heidi Wigren




    When circumstances in my marriage made it impossible for it to continue successfully, I was devastated with the thought of going through a divorce. The thoughts of fighting in court and the negative wounds I had seen created by that process in the lives of other people made me ill. I read about Divorce Mediation in a small newspaper and hoped it was an answer to a prayer. As I went through the process, I found that it truly was a positive answer to a negative situation.

    From the first visit, which I attended alone, I was impressed with the warm and supportive climate in the office. Having both a male and female advocate made so much sense, since there are two sides to look at in all issues, when one is honestly looking at reality. The ground rules that were set when we both went in the first time we enforceable and fair. In the discussions we had at the round table, respect was maintained for opinions, even when there was disagreement, people listened without interruption. Issues were clarified so that there was understanding even when there was not agreement. I saw high level communication skills being used by Shirley and Dave as we went through the mediation process. And they led the two of us to that level of communication on the topics needed to negotiate the issues of the divorce settlement. I was also impressed with their ability to remain objective and to think of alternate solutions, to remain involved but detached enough that they were objective.

    Difficult experiences were a part of the process I went through on the road to the divorce, but through it all, I felt the support of Shirley and David. They answered my questions, returned phone calls, found information, supported my rights, and did not allow them to be trampled. The mental cost of agonizing over "he said-she said" was nonexistent as we sat at the round table and issues were mediated to a solution. I highly recommend Divorce Mediation to anyone in a similar situation.

    Sharlee Doxey




    Mediation Takes the Fear Out of Divorce

    When my ex-husband announced his desire for a divorce, I was terrified. I had heart countless horror stories about couples that fight over everything, try to destroy the other, and try to use their children against each other. You hear about how long it takes, how much it costs, how emotionally draining it becomes. In short, the word divorce usually instills fear in most people and certainly did in me. But when we looked into different alternatives on how to divorce and discovered mediation, we knew this was by far the best way to go.

    After our first visit with the mediators, I immediately felt at ease and in control of the situation. I was relieved to learn that mediation would take only a few sessions, in our case, and the cost would be minimal. It was so great to see that through mediation, my ex-husband and I could calmly discuss together, with a neutral mediator, the most equitable way to divide everything in our marriage. That we would never have to worry about taking the other to court over a certain issue, and that we would never have to appear in court personally. When we finished our sessions, I was surprised at how quickly everything had taken place, but did not feel we had been rushed. All decisions were made solely by us, not a judge, and all decision were made at our own pace.

    I cannot imagine a better alternative to litigation. Even for couples were there is some tension and animosity, I am sure that conflicts could be best resolve and agreed upon in a mediation setting rather than in a tense, impersonal courtroom. Mediation gives one hundred percent of the control to the people divorcing, litigation would not. And for me, mediation took the fear out of divorce and lessened the emotional distress.

    Lara




    I wanted to take some time to thank you both for your endless hours of work that you did for us. When we started I knew what a challenge our divorce would be but you had the patience and knowledge to help us come to a final agreement. I appreciate the extra time you took with us the creative ways you had to help us look at the situation from different points of view.

    You saved us thousands of dollars in attorney fees, and gave us the ability to come to our own decisions without having a judge tell us what we were going to do.

    I always felt comfortable in your office I knew what was said was kept in confidence. I feel like you did a great job in keeping non-bias, yet each of us could voice our opinion and it was listened to and taken into consideration.

    I will always be grateful to you both I would recommend you to anyone getting a divorce in fact I have many times. Your team is the best!!!

    Sincerely,
    Shelley Nielson