RESOURCE CENTER

Divorce information and forms:

Why Do Individuals Choose To Mediate Their Separation, Divorce, Or Post-Divorce Issues?  Responses from actual participants in Mediation.

12 Steps to Divorce  A description of the process, including the forms necessary to move forward.

As Your Mediator, What I Will Do The goal is cooperative, civil and empowering conversation leading to agreements.

As Your Mediator, What I Won’t Do I am not a miracle worker.

Calculating Child Support  This is the Child Support Calculator created by and used the California Department of Child Support Services (DCSS).

Child Custody Time Equivalents  These are the percentage equivalents for every possible combination of timeshare.

Custody and Visitation Benchguide  This is the booklet that the Judges read to learn about Custody and Visitation.

Child Support and Spousal Support Benchguide  This is the booklet that the Judges read to learn all about support.

What to Bring to your Single Session Mediation (The Checklist)  This is important homework to be completed before your Mediation session.

The Mediation Agreement you will be asked to sign (Divorce)  This is the actual form.

Stipulation and Appointment Order to have Irwin appointed a Private Judge If Private Judging is your choice, here are the documents to be signed and filed.


Australia decided a New System of Family Law and Divorce was needed.  Read the 5 page report of findings after the 2006 Reforms were implemented.   Consensual Dispute Resolution and Mediation provide better outcomes.


Other options:

Self-Help Center (Watsonville Courthouse) Website If you are self-represented, you should bookmark this site.

Just Legal Help--Telephone Consultation with a Family Law Attorney  A private service.  An experienced, local Divorce Attorney gives telephone advice and will fill out forms for you. Not free, but potentially money-saving.

Legal Document Assistant  A licensed professional who will complete all of the forms necessary for divorce, from start to finish.  If there are no disputes, go for it and save a lot of money!  There are several in Santa Cruz, including Tamara Parker, Christina Scherer and Gloria Kessel.  

Collaborative Lawyers  Attorneys in this local group are committed to avoiding litigation.  More expensive than a private mediator, but structured so that court may be avoided altogether.


Civil, Probate, other cases--Information and forms: 

Mediation Agreement (civil)  This is the agreement you will be asked to sign before we begin.

As Your Mediator, What I Will Do The goal is cooperative, civil and empowering conversation leading to agreements.

As Your Mediator, What I Won’t Do I am not a miracle worker.

Stipulation and Appointment Order to have Irwin appointed a Private Judge If Private Judging is your choice, here are the documents to be signed and filed. 

Let's NOT Make a Deal! 

A study finds that when Plaintiffs and Defendants reject the last, best offer at mediation, they are more often wrong in doing so!


Contact and personal information:

Irwin's personal, direct email The direct line!

Irwin's Curriculum Vitae This is a listing of previous jobs, education and accomplishments. 


Free fillable forms: 

Mandatory Court Forms for Family Law Cases 

These Judicial Council forms can be filled out on the computer and then printed and brought to the clerk’s office for filing.  There is no electronic filing for Divorce cases in Santa Cruz County.

California Judicial Council Forms These are the official fillable forms for every area of the law provided by the State Court system--free.


Additional information:

Attorney Status with California State Bar To check to see if an attorney is in good standing, has ever been disciplined, correct address and telephone, and schools attended.

Santa Cruz Superior Court Website Lots of good information.  If you are trying to "Do Your Own Divorce," be sure to be acquainted with Local Family Court Rules.


Reports, Opinions, Codes:

Elkins Family Law Task Force Report (April, 2010) After two years, the Task Force makes over 100 recommendations to improve Family Law Courts in California.

Court of Appeals Published Decisions Affirming Irwin's Decisions These oft-cited cases brought increased fairness to support disputes.  Unpublished opinions are not cite-worthy, so they aren't included.

To obtain any California Published Opinion Another free search service of the State Court system.

Code of Civil Procedure (2010) Sections 1280 - 1288.8 (Arbitration) These are the CCP sections setting out the procedures for Arbitration in their entirety.