Mediation - A voluntary, confidential process where a

qualified neutral professional assists the parties in reaching a durable resolution of some or all of the outstanding issues arising in their case.


Early Neutral Evaluation - A confidential process where the parties agree to present their case to a qualified neutral (financial ENEs use one legal or financial neutral) or team of neutrals (social evaluations usually include neutral team including one lawyer and one mental health professional) who provide an evaluative opinion regarding the likely outcome of parenting or financial issues. In both processes the parties may negotiate a resolution with the assistance of the evaluator after the evaluative opinion is rendered.


Med-Arb - A process that combines mediation and

arbitration, where the parties agree in advance that they will first mediate their issues, but if they are not able to reach a resolution, they will proceed to binding arbitration with the same qualified neutral.


Arbitration - A process by which parties agree to present and submit their dispute to a qualified neutral third party who will issue a binding or non-binding decision. Prior to the commencement of the arbitration, the parties must agree whether the arbitrator's decision will be binding or non-binding.


Consensual Special Magistrate - A forum in which the

parties agree to present their case to a qualified neutral in the same manner as a civil lawsuit is presented to a judge. The process is binding and includes the right of appeal to the Minnesota Court of Appeals.




Parenting Time Expeditor - Parenting Time Expeditors

(PTEs) are appointed by the court pursuant to Minnesota

Statute Section 518.1751. This is a confidential process where the PTE uses a Med-Arb process to resolve parenting time disputes by enforcing, interpreting and clarifying an existing parenting time court order. A PTE may also address parenting time issues not specifically addressed by an existing court orders, and/or determine if an existing court order has been violated. The PTE may not change or make decisions inconsistent with a standing court order. The goal is to set up a respectful, child-focused, interactive process for the resolution of parenting time disputes.