Portland Family Mediation Services

Michael Dwyer

“Before we met with you in mediation, we could not have imagined eating Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner together again as a family.  I am writing to let you know how grateful we felt sitting down for Christmas dinner this year – together.”  

-From a client in a family whose two generations had been fractured by provisions in a father’s will.


Family mediation offers a safe, sane process for resolving disputes. Conflict does not have to destroy our long-lasting relationships and our most precious bonds. A good family mediation council can help families find satisfying and lasting solutions, even when strong emotions are involved.

An Alternative to Litigation

Too many disputes end in hurt feelings and damaged relationships. Litigation is often ruinous for families. Not only is it wastefully expensive, it is not designed to deal with the complexities and problems that modern families face. Based on a “winner­/loser” model, the litigation system does not focus on solving problems creatively and finding a resolution. No wonder people commonly report growing further apart and feeling worse during litigation.

Family mediation provides an alternative with better outcomes for everyone. Most families are able to find a good solution through mediation without losing the people they love.

Family Divorce Mediation

Divorces can be sad, stressful, and exhausting. There’s no wrong way to feel. Every divorce process is different, because every family is unique.

Most divorcing couples have a long-term interest in making a successful transition to co-parenting their children. Mediation can help couples keep their families intact through the difficult process of getting a divorce.

Other Family Mediation Conflicts

Michael Dwyer and Dwyer Mediation & Law helps people resolve conflicts in all stages of a family’s life, not just divorce. These disputes include:

  • Adoptions and Surrogacy
  • Paternity
  • Premarital and Postmarital Agreements
  • Divorce
  • Child Custody and Parenting
  • Spousal Support
  • Division of Assets and Debts
  • Dissolution of Family­-Owned Businesses
  • Guardianships and Conservatorships
  • Elder Care
  • Probate
Dwyer Mediation Office

The Family Mediation Process

Michael helps families come to agreements that take into consideration a deep understanding of the needs, goals and concerns of all family members involved in the conflict. Mediators don’t impose agreements upon the participants. Instead they naturally arise when family members are able, with the help of skillful mediation, to discover the core of a dispute and to explore creative solutions that address unmet needs and concerns.

Meet Michael Dwyer

Best Lawyers Oregon

Years of experience as a family mediator have allowed Michael to work with hundreds of families in conflict. Michael worked for many years as a family lawyer, and has studied and taught in the areas of conflict resolution, mediation and negotiation.

What sets Michael apart from most family mediators is his extensive study of the life of a family. He has a deep understanding of psychology, psychotherapy, attachment theory, social science regarding parenting plans, family systems theory, and family­-related topics in neuroscience.

Michael’s work in family mediation services has been recognized by his peers. He was named the 2015 Lawyer of the Year by Best Lawyers of America for his family mediation work in Portland. For many years Best Lawyers and Oregon Super Lawyers have listed Michael in their annual reviews for his mediation work.

If you would like to learn how child mediation can help your family, contact Michael and Dwyer Mediation & Law. Or call (503) 241-9456.