THOUGHTS ABOUT HOW WE CAN STILL PROVIDE MEANINGFUL
SERVICES TO NEW CLIENTS WHILE COMBATTING CORONAVIRUS
We are all trying to figure out how to respond to the COVID-19 threat in a responsible, humane and creative way, so please share any ideas you have. Here are some of ours:
For Mediation Clients
• We are learning how to connect in a virtual, remote way, so let us help you proceed with a divorce using this new technology. We use Zoom, but I am not opposed to trying out other applications if that is your preference. Even if you do not know how to use Zoom, I can help you learn the basics so you can meaningfully participate in a meeting.
• If you and your spouse can sit in the same room together and discuss your divorce issues, then sitting in a virtual room should not be a problem either. However, if you did not think you could sit next to your spouse in a mediation setting even though the mediation process appealed to you, then the virtual setting might actually work better for you. It is worth trying.
• I am finding that my meetings with mediation clients are just as substantive and meaningful as when the three of us are in the same room. It is still my preference to all be together, but virtual meetings can be just as productive.
For Individual Clients
• It is quite easy to set up an initial consultation with you via the Zoom app. I already have many clients who do not live locally, and I have Skyped with them as necessary in the past. Zoom is more popular these days, but I am not tied to any platform. For now, honoring the Shelter in Place Order feels like the right thing to do. Let’s make the best of it. Hey, if therapists can provide teletherapy, then I can provide telejurisprudence (you can look it up!).
• I often use email these days to communicate with clients and opposing counsel. But I always prefer a face-to-face meeting, even through Zoom or Skype because emails are just so dry and are not good at communicating tone and more nuanced ideas. Sometimes a follow-up discussion is required or helpful and email is a poor substitute. It is very easy to jump on a spontaneous Zoom one-on-one meeting, as easy as picking up the phone or sending an email. We are wondering what the long-term effects of this change in our lives will be and I already think one positive one will be participating in more virtual calls than emails. At least for the more substantive discussions.