Date Published: Jul 31, 2005
Source: 
Violence Against Women
Authors: 
Johnson, N. E., Saccuzzo, D. P, & Koen, W. J.
Volume: 
11
Issue: 
8
Page Numbers: 
1022-1053

Mediation of child custody disputes is mandated in several states. Investigators have averred that victims of domestic violence (DV) are greatly disadvantaged in mediation. The present study empirically evaluated outcomes and found that mediators failed to recognize and report DV in 56.9% of the DV cases. The court's screening form failed to indicate DV in at least 14.7% of the violent cases. Mediation resulted in poor outcomes for DV victims in terms of protections, such as supervised visitation and protected child exchanges. Mediator capacity to focus on the child's best interest was called into question. Child custody mediation should not be mandated in cases of DV. (Abstract from author)