Mediating a Parenting Plan

Mediating a Parenting Plan

Parent EducationMediating a Parenting PlanFinding a MediatorMediator Portal

What is a Parenting Plan?

A parenting plan lays out how you will parent from separate homes. You have an opportunity to decide how to be there for your child so that they feel safe and loved. Think of it as a road map. It will provide a structure to your child to grow and thrive.  

A parenting plan outlines everyday activities and decisions that need to be made as you and the other parent raise your child. A parenting plan also has a lot of specifics. Examples may include: when your child will be with each parent, how your child will move back and forth between two homes, and how you and the other parent will communicate.

Developing a Parenting Plan

There are different options to develop a parenting plan.  You can:

  • Work with the other parent. Self-help templates cover all of the required components of a plan.
  • Use an attorney
  • Participate in mediation

If you are unable to develop a parenting plan, the court can order you to attempt mediation. If you and the other parent are unable to agree on a plan, the court will develop a plan for you. 

Mediating a Parenting Plan

You as parents are the experts about your child. You know schedules, interests, personalities, and all the things that make your child unique. Because of that, you are encouraged to create a parenting plan along with the other parent.  One option is through mediation. 

Mediating a parenting plan allows you to keep your focus on what is best for your child as a first priority. With a mediator,  you and the other parent talk about what is important and what concerns you have. You may talk to the mediator and the other parent together, or each of you can talk with the mediator separately. It is the responsibility of the mediator to provide a process that allows you to say what you need to say to develop the best plan possible.

Mediator Qualifications

Mediators that are approved to work with parents on developing parenting plans are required to have 60 hours of training. Once approved, every two years mediators must complete 8 hours of continuing education and mediate a minimum of two cases. 

Becoming a Mediator

Mediation Training
The Nebraska Mediation Association (NMA) is a statewide network of mediators that develops, implements, and sustains quality conflict resolution, mediation, and consensus building. The NMA promotes mediation, and supports and provides training and educational opportunities. NMA provides links, resources, and enhanced opportunities among mediation professionals. For further training information, visit NMA's website.

Private Mediators (those not approved by ODR)
The ODR does not directly work with private mediators, with the exception of approved Parenting Act mediators. Private mediators should be familiar with state statutes and court rules regarding mediation, including relevant professional codes of ethics regarding the practice of mediation. 

Center Affiliated Mediator
Have you taken training and are interested in mediating cases? Contact your local mediation center to find out the benefits of mediating through a center. 


Nicole Britten, Program Specialist

Kelly Riley, M.P.A., Director

Nebraska Office of Dispute Resolution
Administrative Office of the Courts and Probation
Mailing Address: PO Box 98910, Lincoln NE 68509-8910
Office Address: 521 S 14th St., Suite 102, Lincoln NE 68508