In the State of California, there is a program that is set up to help families settle disputes involving such things as custody, visitation, adoption, guardianships etc.
This program is called the Family Dispute Resolution Program or FDR and they consist of a group of trained individuals who serve families and children. The group can provide a number of services including mediation, child custody evaluation and helps support the court staff that aid families. Most of these services can be found at your courthouse in the family services department and they will have a number of professionals ready to help the public.
Some of the other services available through the Family Dispute Resolution Program are:
-Consultation, support and site visits
-Identifying effective practices
-Legislation affecting the delivery of family dispute resolution services
-Proposing changes in rules and forms
The Family Dispute Resolution division of the Center for Families, Children & the Courts concentrates on helping the trial courts. The Family Court Services staff provide the following:
• Mediation for Child custody mediation
• Mediation for Juvenile dependency
• Evaluation for Child custody
• Orientation programs for Parents
• There are also other associated services assigned by the court (such as guardianship, investigations, mediation and minor marriage valuations)