Menu Dependent Items

Serving our community for more than 25 years
Find us on Facebook

Although not comprehensive of every detail while keeping in mind that your best judgment, flexibility, professionalism and courtesy are always good guiding principles, here is a guide to how the different courts work. Always feel free to call me, Bill, at anytime with questions, to check in about the number of cases on the docket, if you need more forms, or anything else.

Hyde Park Court
Arrive at 4:45 p.m. Check in with the court clerk and/or court officers. We do not get a copy of the cases at Hyde Park beforehand. You can sit in the back of the courtroom. Judge will usually refer the cases early/right at 5 p.m. As there is no way to know the relationship of the parties beforehand, you should check in with them. Return agreements to the court clerk or officers for the judge’s signature and tell parties they will get copies after the judge signs them.

City of Poughkeepsie
Arrive at 8:45 a.m. for court. Check in with court clerk and/or court officers. Clerk will usually have copies of the upcoming cases ready - you can double check the relationship on these. You can wait in the hallway outside the courtroom or in the courtroom if seats are available. Court officer/s will usually call out the cases in the courtroom and give you the file. Return file/agreements to court clerk or officers for judges’ signature. Let them know you have about 30 minutes for mediation as the court is quite busy. You can check in with them with about 10 minutes left to see what they want to do but let them decide if they want to go longer or not (it is OK if they go over the time limit). Also let them know the court officers may come in if things get too loud to ask them to keep it down.

Town of Wappingers
Arrive at 5:30 p.m. for court. Check in with court officer/s - let them know you can start mediation as early as they like. Confirm the court has set aside a room for mediation. You can sit in the back of the courtroom. There is no way to know relationship beforehand - make sure to ask at the beginning of session and refer parties with current or previous inmate relationship to the center. Return agreements to court or officers for judges’ signature.

Town of Lagrange
Arrive at 3:45 p.m. for court. Check in with court officer/s. You can sit in the back of the courtroom. There is no way to know relationship before hand - make sure to ask at beginning of session and refer parties with a current or previous inmate relationship to the center. Return agreements to court clerk of officers for judges’ signature.

Town of Pleasant Valley
Arrive at 6:45 p.m. for court. Check in with court officer/s. You can sit in the back of the courtroom. There is no way to know relationship beforehand - make sure to ask in beginning of session and refer parties with current or previous intimate relationship to the center. Return agreements to court clerk or officer for judges’ signature. As this court stays late……

Town of Fishkill
Arrive at 8:45 a.m. for court. Check in with court officer/s. You can sit in the back of the courtroom. There is no way to know relationship beforehand - make sure to ask in the beginning of session and refer parties with a current or previous intimate relationship to the center. Return agreements to court clerk or officers for judge’ signature.

For all small claims courts nights, we try to schedule two mediators. By arriving 15 minutes before the court time you can check in on how you would like to run the mediations (who will do the opening, etc.) and check in with the court clerk.

At all courts ask how the parties know each other at the beginning of the session and refer parties with a current or previous intimate relationship to the center – letting them know they can pursue mediation but it has to be done through the center. (As much as possible try to normalize this and say that in the experience of the Mediation Center, there is a bit more to certain types of cases and that those cases are done through the center. You can give them the phone number (845) 471-7213 and/or brochure, business card, etc.)

Mediator Checklist for Small Claims Cases

Consent form: to be signed by everyone in the room.

Mediation Profile (on the back of the consent form): to be completed by the mediator/s after mediation.

Demographic Questionnaire: to be voluntarily completed by each party.

Agreements:

  • At the center - make sure the parties and the mediator/s sign it and keep the white copy so the we can send it to the court, give each side of the dispute one of the carbon copies (doesn’t matter which color) and keep one for the mediation center’s records. The judges will review and sign the original copy which will be kept at court. If there are any problems in the process, we will contact the parties. If they don’t hear from us, they can assume everything has been taken care of and they do not have to contact the court. Yet they can contact the court at any point to make sure the paperwork has gone through.
  • At court - return all copies of the agreement to the court officer and let the parties know that the judge will call them up again to review the agreement and will then give each party a copy.

Case File: after the case is mediated, please return to the Completed Mediation Cases wall mailbox to the right in the back office with the photocopier.

Thank you and please call Bill at the center if you have any questions
(845) 471-7213.