Our office emphasizes mediation and collaborative law, as well as non-adversarial court cases such as adoption and some guardianships.
We do still litigate when the opposing party is unwilling to use one of the above approaches. We want to use the right tool for our client’s situation, but we do everything we can to avoid the escalating animosity that often accompanies litigation. We advise the use of mediation when the parties are not far apart, and we recommend a team based collaborative law approach when the issues are complex or when one or both parties want extra support and/or advocacy within the cooperative effort.
Stefan Otterson has lived and practiced law in Anchorage since 1988.
Stefan started out in private commercial legal practice, but joined the Attorney General’s Office in 1990. There he was a child protection and juvenile delinquency prosecutor, and also represented the Divisions of Public Safety, Mental Health, and Medicaid. Since 2000 Stefan has practiced family law in courts all over Southcentral, Southwest and Northwest Alaska. Stefan has been a child advocate since 2000.
Stefan Otterson has been a mediator since 2001 and was trained in collaborative law in 2008. Since then he has handled numerous collaborative cases, all but one of which ended with a settlement (custody was settled but not property).
I mediate generally in 3 way meetings with clients, and sometimes utilize other professionals when there are complex financial issues or questions regarding children’s needs.
The Alaska Collaborative Practice group uses a team model in which a neutral (usually with a counseling background) facilitates the process. This leaves the attorneys free to concentrate on their client’s needs. A financial professional and a child specialist may also be part of the team where appropriate.
Stefan lived and worked in Europe for three years before attending the University of Utah, graduating suma cum laude in 1984. He received both an MBA and Law Degree from the University of Utah schools of Business and Law in 1988.
Mediation and Collaborative $225/hr
Paralegal support available at $100/hr