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Divorce Mediation

Divorce mediation allows couples to create the terms of their divorce and separation agreement amicably. MWI’s experienced mediators help clients reach agreement on each topic related to divorce in Massachusetts, including: division of assets, children, parenting time, health insurance, and more. MWI also offers online divorce mediation services.

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Divorce Mediators in MA (click on photo for bio)

During COVID-19, MWI Mediators are providing online divorce mediation services. Contact Josh to learn more at 617-895-4028.

  • Judge Linda Pearce Prestley, (ret)
    Judge Linda Pearce Prestley, (ret)
  • Josh Hoch
    Josh Hoch
  • Nnena Odim
    Nnena Odim
  • Ben Stich
    Ben Stich
Judge Linda Pearce Prestley, (ret)

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Co-Mediating Family, Divorce, and Employment Cases with MWI in Boston, MA
617-895-4028divorce@mwi.org

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Dispute Resolution Experience

Hon. Linda Pearce Prestley (ret.) is a former Superior Court Judge of the State of Connecticut Judicial Branch where she served as a presiding judge in the Family court. She is now a co-mediator with MWI in Boston. Judge Prestley mediates divorce, family, permanency planning, civil, employment, and housing cases. Her expertise includes all aspects of family law matters, child abuse and neglect, domestic violence, diversity training, legal issues in education, employment discrimination, and administrative remedies. In 1997, Judge Prestley was appointed by the Governor as an ombudsman to head the Office of the Child Advocate, an oversight entity of agencies providing services to children. Prior to becoming a mediator and judge, she worked as an Assistant Attorney General representing the State of Connecticut’s Department of Education, Department of Children and Families, and the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities. She also served as an adjunct professor at the college and law school levels.


Representative Matters

  • Divorce Mediation
  • Family Mediation
  • Civil Disputes
  • Employment discrimination
  • Permanency

Judge Prestley now specializes in defusing disputes and resolving them through mediation.


Mediation Training

  • Mediation Matters, Kensington, MD, 2018
  • Martha’s Vineyard Mediation Program, Vineyard Haven, MA, 2019
  • Mediation Works Inc (MWI), 2019-2020
  • Permanency Planning Mediation, 2020

Background and Education

  • Hood College, Frederick, MD (Bachelor of Arts)
  • Harvard University, Cambridge, MA (Master of Education)
  • University of Connecticut School of Law, Hartford, CT, (Juris Doctorate)

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Josh Hoch

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Mediating Divorce and Family Cases with MWI in Boston and Online
617-895-4028jhoch@mwi.org

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Josh Hoch is a mediator, instructor, and is Director of Mediation Services at MWI. A mediator since 1996, Josh mediates family, divorce, parenting, child support, never married parents, and housing cases. In addition to his mediation work, Josh is also a member of MWI’s training faculty and leads advanced mediation training programs in areas of divorce, housing/eviction, and advanced dispute resolution skill building. As Director of Mediation Services at MWI, Josh manages mediations and arbitrations in the areas of family law, consumer automotive, real estate, land use, construction, and workplace/employment. Josh also serves as MWI’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP) liaison. Additionally, Josh coordinates monthly workshops for parents seeking divorce and serves as a mentor to mediators looking to expand their practice to include divorce mediation. Josh is a member of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC), and served on the Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Chapter of AFCC for seven years. Josh has been featured in the Boston Globe and on the award-winning New England newsmagazine television show “Chronicle” where he provided information about marriage, divorce, and the use of divorce and family mediation in Massachusetts.

Due to COVID-19, Josh is currently meeting with clients via video and phone only. Click here to schedule a free consultation or mediation session. To read client testimonials, click here.


Focus Areas

Josh has mediated over 750 cases:

  • Divorce Mediation – He helps his clients create the terms of divorce, complete court required paperwork, obtain a Separation Agreement, and file for divorce
  • Never married parents – separation, parenting plans, and child support
  • Physical separation, asset & liability division, and property division
  • Same-sex divorces
  • Custody disputes
  • Parenting plans
  • Pro se and with counsel present
  • Post-Divorce
  • Adult sibling
  • Adult child(ren) and parent(s)
  • Several cases mediated with various translators
  • High conflict divorce and family cases
  • Cases involving bipolar disorder, substance abuse, and domestic violence
  • Housing and Eviction

Honors, Memberships, and Professional Activities

  • Served on the Assistant Judicial Case Manger (AJCM) Transition Working Group for the Chief Justice of the Probate and Family Court, 2019
  • Served on the ADR Education Subcommittee for the Massachusetts Trial Court, 2019
  • Designed and administers the court-approved “Better Parent” Parent Education Program for parents seeking divorce, 2016
  • Designed and supervises a mediation program where divorce and family mediation services are provided at the Norfolk Probate and Family Court, (September 2013 – present)
  • Received recognition for outstanding performance and lasting contributions to the MA AFCC Chapter, an organization working to assist families in conflict through education, research and services
  • Served for 7 years on the Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Chapter of AFCC
  • Member of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts
  • Member of the Massachusetts Chapter of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts
  • Member of the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation
  • Organizational Member of the New England Chapter of the Association for Conflict Resolution
  • Appeared on the award winning New England newsmagazine television show “Chronicle” where he provided information about marriage, divorce and the use of divorce and family mediation in MA
  • Featured as a mediator in a Boston Globe article
  • Served as Treasurer for an annual fundraiser for Jimmy Fund Clinic patients and their families helping to raise over $500,000

Lectures and ADR Trainings Conducted

  • Designed and serves as an instructor for an Advanced Dispute Resolution Training Program for Probation Officers of the Probate and Family Court. (May 2019 – present)
  • Norfolk Probate and Family Court Department, mediation program mentor and supervisor, (2013 – present)
  • Advanced Divorce Mediation Training Instructor, (April 2005 – present)
  • Provide individual mentoring to mediators looking to increase their effectiveness as mediators, (2003 – present)
  • AFCC’s 54th Annual Conference: Turning the Kaleidoscope of Family Conflict into a Prism of Harmony, Conference Presenter (May 2017)
  • Community Dispute Settlement Center (CDSC), Housing Mediation Trainer, (February 2017)
  • International Academic Institute of Mediation, Conference Presenter, Divorce Mediation in the Courts, (September 2015)
  • Advanced Refresher Mediation Skills Training Program, Presenter, (2015 – 2016)
  • New England Chapter of the Association for Conflict Resolution Biennial Regional Conference, Presenter, “I’m a Trained Mediator, Now What do I Do?”, (June 2015)
  • Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation, Presenter, On-site mediation project in the Norfolk Probate and Family Court Department, (2014)
  • Emerson College, Guest Speaker, (2014 – 2016)
  • New England Law | Boston, Ethical Standards, Presenter, (2005 – 2013)
  • Liaison for Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy Mediation Practicum, (2001 – 2011)
  • A Child’s Voice in Court: How to Get It, How to Interpret It and How to Use It, Panel Speaker, (2008)
  • Coca-Cola Enterprise Inc., Trainer. Trained over 950 employees dispute resolution and communication skills and educated over 1700 employees through briefings, (Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, New York, Vermont), (2004 – 2006)
  • Harvard Law School, Intern Fair, Cambridge, MA, Presenter, (2005)
  • Simmons College Graduate School of Social Work, Guest Lecturer, Parent – Teen Mediation (2004)
  • Boston University Law School, Court Connected ADR, Guest Speaker, (2003 – 2008)
  • Hale and Dorr Legal Services Center, Divorce Mediation Presenter, (2003 – 2004)
  • Newton and Lexington Community Education, Presenter: Divorce Information You Want to Know, (2003 – 2005)
  • Germaine Lawrence, Family Communication Workshop, Facilitator, (2001 – 2005)
  • Southern New England School of Law, Mediation Trainer and Coach (2001 – 2004)
  • Northeastern University, undergraduate class, Guest Speaker, (2001 – 2002)

Background and Education

  • Divorce Mediator, MWI, Boston, MA, 2001 – Present
  • Director of Mediation Services, MWI, Boston, MA, 2001 – Present
  • Divorce Mediator, CLC Inc., Granite Bay, CA, 2004 – Present
  • Court & Divorce Mediator, Cambridge, MA, 2001 – 2012
  • Boston Municipal Court Mediator, Boston, MA, 2004 – 2007
  • Mediator for Prisoner Disputes, Middlesex Multi-Door Courthouse, Cambridge, MA, 2003 – 2005
  • District Court Mediator, Middlesex Mediation Program, Lowell, MA, 2000 – 2001
  • Staff Member, Academy of Family Mediators, Jan. 2000 – Dec. 2000
  • B.A. University of Massachusetts at Amherst, 1998
  • Mediation Training, L. Wing Mediation Consulting, 1996

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Nnena Odim

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Mediating Divorce & Family Matters with MWI in Jamaica Plain and Boston
617-895-4028 | divorce@mwi.org

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Dispute Resolution Experience

Nnena Odim is a mediator, trainer, attorney, and consultant. She has been mediating since 1997 and has mediated disputes involving issues such as employment, housing, business, consumer, and specializes in mediating the full range of family/domestic relations (elder care, adoption, care and protection, CHINS, divorce, grandparent visitation, and LGBTQ issues, etc.). Nnena also designed and/or led numerous conflict management trainings for several local and national businesses and agencies, including Coca Cola Enterprises, the Boston Public Schools, and the Massachusetts Housing Authority. In addition to her mediation and conflict resolution training background, Nnena is the Director and Senior Clinical Instructor of the Family/Domestic Violence Law Clinic at The Legal Services Center of Harvard Law School. She provides experiential training to law students as she teaches them how to become effective and ethical attorneys.  Nnena has also worked with the Harvard Mediation Program and Harvard Program on Negotiation to provide trainings for students and various community members and to supervise Harvard Law School students in their mediation and negotiation studies. Nnena has mediated personal, academic, and administrative issues between students and faculty in higher education settings and served as a coach of mediation skills for trainings at MIT, Suffolk and Boston College Law Schools, and New England School of Law. In 2013, Nnena was a Top Women in the Law award recipient from Mass. Lawyers Weekly. In 2015, she received the Harvard Law School Dean’s Award for Excellence.


Focus Areas

  • Worked with over 100 same-sex couples in both mediation and litigation, on a variety of legal scenarios, such as 2nd parent adoptions, divorce (with and without children), paternity, business dissolution, pre- and post-nuptial agreements, and donor agreements for sperm donation
  • Drafted over 100 post-mediation Settlement Agreements and Memoranda of Understanding
  • Guardian ad Litem, appointed by Suffolk and Middlesex County Family and Probate Courts

Honors, Memberships, and Professional Activities

  • Top Women in the Law award recipient, Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, 2013
  • Member, Association for Conflict Resolution
  • Member, American Bar Association
  • Licensed Real Estate Broker

Lectures and ADR Trainings Conducted

  • Training faculty for MWI’s annual Advanced Divorce Training
  • Guest lecturer for Suffolk and Boston College Law Schools’ mediation courses

Background and Education

  • J.D., Northeastern University School of Law (1997)
  • M.S., University of Massachusetts/Amherst (1991)
  • B.S., University of Pittsburgh (1985)

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Ben Stich

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Mediating Divorce & Family Cases with MWI in Natick and Newton
617-895-4028 | divorce@mwi.org

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Dispute Resolution Experience

Ben Stich is a family and divorce mediator with MWI. He mediates conflicts of all kinds, specializing in family disputes. He mediates divorce, co-parenting conflict, parent-teen disputes, marital issues, and elder decisions. Ben also helps families resolve conflicts as an instructor for the state’s only High Conflict Parent Education program at William James College.

In addition to mediating, Ben is Director of Certification for Think:Kids, a division of MGH’s Department of Psychiatry. Ben trains and coaches a wide range of individuals and organizations in the Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS) model, an approach to understanding and working with children and teenagers with challenging behaviors. Ben is a licensed independent clinical social worker, and directed an adolescent residential treatment program for eight years, and counseled students in a local high school for over six years.


Focus Areas

  • Divorce for short-term and long-term marriages
  • Co-Parenting plans
  • Custody disputes
  • Parent-Teen Conflict
  • Marriage Problems
  • Interim separation agreements
  • Asset and liability division
  • Property division
  • High conflict divorce matters
  • Elder and estate disputes

Honors, Memberships, and Professional Activities

  • Member, Massachusetts Council for Family Mediation (MCFM)
  • Licensed Independent Social Worker (LICSW)
  • School Adjustment Counselor License
  • Member, National Association of Social Workers
  • Collaborative Problem Solving Certification from Mass General’s Department of Psychiatry’s Think:Kids program
  • Member, AFCC

Lectures and ADR Trainings Conducted & Publications

  • “Better Parent” Parent Education Program, June 2016 – Present
  • Parenting Apart Instructor for the Divorce Center, 2014 – 2016
  • Communication and Conflict Blogger, 2013 – present
  • Communication Workshop for the Parent/Professional Advocacy League, 2014
  • High Conflict Divorce Mediation Training, 2013
  • Collaborative Problem Solving for:
    – Canton School District, Central Cabinet, 2011-2012
    – MENTOR Network – Therapeutic Foster Care Program, 2011
    – Massachusetts School Counselors Association – Guidance Administrators Forum, 2011
  • More Than Words, Workplace Communication Workshop, 2010
  • Germaine Lawrence, Family Communication Workshop, Co-Facilitator, (2001 – 2005)
  • Residential Treatment for Adolescent Girls for:
    – National Child Welfare League of America Conference (2005)
    – MASOC Annual Conference (2005-2009)
    – Tenth National Workshop on Adult and Juvenile Female Offenders (2003)

Background and Education

  • M.Ed in Organizational Development, Endicott College
  • MSW, Boston College, 2001
  • BA, Trinity College, 1996

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To read our 5 star client reviews, click here. To view additional divorce mediators, click here. Services are also available in New York and New Hampshire.


Divorce Mediation Process

MWI guides clients through each step of the divorce process in Massachusetts:

  1. Meet with a mediator to learn more about divorce mediation – schedule a free consultation here
    • Online divorce mediation available with most MWI divorce mediators
  2. At a first session:
    • Review a checklist of each topic
    • Obtain information to make informed decisions
  3. During mediation, reach agreements that work for each of you
  4. If you have children under the age of 18, attend a mandatory parent education program
  5. Review a draft of your divorce agreement
  6. Finalize, sign, and notarize paperwork
  7. Attend court for a brief hearing

Schedule Time to Speak with a Mediator

 

Why Divorce Mediation?

Since divorce mediators assist couples in reaching an amicable divorce agreement in less time and with less cost than other methods, such as litigation, divorce mediation is a good choice for many divorcing couples. To find out if divorce mediation is an option for your situation, contact us at 617-895-4028 or request a call from a divorce mediator.

Schedule a Consultation

For couples considering divorce or who have made the decision to divorce, MWI invites you to take advantage of a free consultation with an MWI mediator in Boston (Financial District), Falmouth, Framingham, Hingham, Jamaica Plain, Mashpee, Natick, Norwood, Peabody, or Salem. Consultations can also take place via phone or video. Consultations are free when both parties attend or $175 if one person attends. To schedule, contact Josh at 617-895-4028 or schedule online.

Locations

MWI provides online divorce mediation for Massachusetts divorce cases. After COVID-19 the following offices locations will reopen: Boston, Falmouth, Hingham, Jamaica Plain, Marlborough, Natick, Norwood, Peabody, Salem, Southborough, and Worcester. In addition, a divorce mediator may be able to travel to you. During COVID-19, services are being provided via video (online) and phone only. For tips about online divorce mediation, click here.

Contact Us

Furthermore, sign up for an upcoming webinar or speak with a divorce mediator at 617-895-4028.


Client Comments

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“There is nothing easy or pleasant about mediating a divorce, so it is critical to have a clearly neutral yet supportive individual leading you through it. Josh is that kind of person. Our goal was to avoid contentious litigation, yet to both come out feeling we had done our best to agree on a fair settlement. Mediation can be the path to this, and having the right person leading the process, such as Josh, is essential. I highly recommend Josh and his organization.”

Divorce Mediation Client February 10, 2019

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For More Information

For more information contact MWI's Director of Mediation Services, Josh Hoch, at jhoch@mwi.org or 617-895-4028.