The MAA team is unique in that we can handle your divorces or modifications post divorce, with or without attorneys!

We offer the best of both worlds to settle your divorce disputes amicably.


Are there benefits to using non-attorney mediators?

In the Great State of Texas, a mediator is not required to be trained as an attorney.  Any person who has taken and passed the various certification classes required by the State (and offered by MAA) may act as a Mediator.  There are several benefits to clients who choose to hire non-attorney mediators.

Some of those benefits are reflective of the actual mediation process.  One of the major restrictions faced by all mediators, attorney and non-attorney alike, is the prohibition that mediators are forbidden to offer legal advice to any party involved in the mediation process.  To do so would be a violation of both ethical and professional standards and open the mediator up to charges of malpractice.

Mediation is very different than legal proceedings.  Mediation is NOT based on confrontation.  Mediation is a neutral process where each party is provided information via the mediator from the other parties to reach a fair and equable agreement for ALL.  The mediator holds no allegiance to any party involved in a mediation, but rather is charged with protecting the process of mediation.  Doing so ensures all parties have a chance to be heard and that each plays a role in development of the final master agreement. No one party is more important than the other.

To achieve this, the best mediators have a wide range of life experiences. As noted in the January, 2010 issue of the newsletter Conflict Resolution (the Law Offices of Joseph C. Markowitz) “…the ideal mediator may be a non-lawyer. Non-lawyers bring to the table whatever training they may have as counselors, coaches, social workers, therapists, business people, or teachers.”  The parties involved in the mediation experience often mirror these job skills.

MAA employs mediators with a wide-range of life experiences.  Business expertise, public administration, military and law enforcement experience, government processes, divorce proceedings, small business operations, equestrian expertise, military veteran issues, education and training and project and program assessment is just a few of the life experiences and education found within the MAA mediator ranks.

Complementing this pool of talent, MAA also has attorney-mediators on staff.  This provides MAA the opportunity to be unique in that it offers the latest in mediation approaches, which include a new trend in mediation successfully used in other states such as New York, California, and Colorado: “CO” and “GENDER BALANCED” mediations. Co-mediation is a mediation involving multiple mediators, usually two. The mediators work as a team to assist the parties in resolving their conflict. In this team approach, the mediators may complement each other by gender, personality, culture, professional background or other ways in a manner that can improve the quality of both the mediation process and its outcome. These mediations have a proven track record in resolving complicated, multi-party disputes. The lawyers who elect to use them have rave reviews! Gender balanced mediation goes one step further and involves both men and women. Often one party will relate better to someone of the same gender; productive resolutions can be achieved when there is a greater perception of fairness in the process.

For close to the same cost as a one-day mediation you can instead choose co-mediation, and get two or more facilitators working together as neutrals to assist in the negotiations.  So, why not have The Best of Both Worlds?

Please note, we are not acting as your attorneys, lawyers, or giving legal advice. Please read the website carefully. If we accept your case, we will be acting as your mediators. If you wish to continue, please let MAA know.

Barbara Allen JD

Barbara Allen JD is a certified advanced attorney-mediator/arbitrator and is a member of the California State Bar.











Dr. Charlene Wittenberg

Dr. Char Wittenberg is an advanced mediator/arbitrator and is a National Certified Counselor with experience in family counseling. is an advanced mediator/arbitrator and is a National Certified Counselor with experience in family counseling.