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Expert Dissolution and Family Law Mediators

Thurman Arnold and Gretchen Taylor

Hon. Gretchen W. Taylor, Judge Retired 

Judge Mediators Los Angeles Former Judge Taylor was admitted to the Bar in California in 1979.  She has practiced family law almost exclusively in the 31 years since.  She is a Certified Family Law Specialist (State Bar of California, Board of Legal Specialization).  Her practice was devoted to divorce and families in Beverly Hills until she became a Commissioner of the Indio Superior Court in Indio, California, in 1997.  While in Indio she was one of two family court judges for the eastern Riverside County communities (excluding Blythe). 

In 2003 Judge Taylor's assignment changed to the downtown Los Angeles Superior Court.  She served as a family court commissioner in Los Angeles until 2009, when she retired and so left the bench.  She has developed a particular expertise with high-conflict, high-asset dissolutions, domestic partnership breakups, but she cares deeply about all manner of relationship difficulties, small and large.

Since retiring in 2009 she has served privately as a family court referee, special master, private judge, and mediator for families residing in Los Angeles County, Orange County, Riverside County, and neighboring cities.  She resides in Beverly Hills and within the Coachella Valley. 

Judge Taylor acts exclusively as a "neutral" professional and does not represent individual clients.

Thurman W. Arnold, III, CFLS
Mediator and Attorney

Thurman W. Arnold is the founder of Desert Family Mediation Services.  He is a Palm Springs' native and was admitted to the Bar in 1982.  He is based in Palm Springs but available in high asset and complex cases to assist parties elsewhere, and exclusively handles family law and related matters.  He is a Certified Family Law Specialist (State Bar of California, Board of Legal Specialization).  He frequently serves as a Judge Pro Tem of the Riverside County Superior Court in Indio, and is a family sciences student part time at Loma Linda University. 

Mr. Arnold is a prolific writer and legal commentator, and has created a number of websites that have significant public value as a free source of important information and inspiration for people who find themselves enmeshed in the crisis of relationship breakup.  He speaks to what divorcing couples and separating domestic partners need to know to protect their legal interests, but his writings and his mediation practice is devoted to helping people explore peacemaking alternatives to relation conflicts.  There are numerous links to his work throughout this site, but you may find his California Family Law Blog of particular interest if you have questions about a huge number of legal topics.

When Mediation is not an option, Thurman Arnold is available to represent family law clients in litigation throughout Southern California with uncommon intelligence, vigor, and devotion.

Wes Arnold Attorney

Dr. Jane Ellen Shatz, Psychologist  

Dr. Shatz has a therapeutic and forensic psychology practice based in Beverly Hills, but is also a part time resident in the Palm Springs area. 

Her achievements are extensive, and she is highly sought after.  She is well known among family law attorneys, jurists, and within the mental health community for her innovative writings, teachings, and for her thorough and insightful forensic work including 730 Evaluations in high-conflict custody and visitation cases. Dr. Shatz has extensive experience working with families in conflict, and in helping to resolve custody disputes and differences.  She helps parents to develop a positive new co-parent relationship and to work together in productive and meaningful ways.

mediating psychologist Actor Alec Baldwin describes Dr. Shatz in his 2008 book "A Promise to Ourselves:  A Journey Through Fatherhood and Divorce" as someone who profoundly helped him with his difficult divorce.  He states, "My sessions with her would become the most valuable I had throughout the entire experience.  I believe that had my case been overseen by someone as intelligent, honest and reasonable as Jane Shatz, my whole nightmare might have ended a lot sooner.  Shatz is one of the heroes of [my] story."

Dr. Shatz brings her deep sensitivities and unflappable demeanor to mediation as an individual mediator for child centered conflicts and as a co-mediator in the larger disputes that also encompass complex financial and legal related issues. 

Together Judge Taylor, Mr. Arnold and Dr. Shatz offer couples over one hundred years of legal psychological expertise, and life experience with marriage, divorce, children, and all the rest....

Explore a Mediated Divorce With Us!  Orientation Meetings are Free!

Contact DFMS

760-323-7455 (Riverside and San Bernardino Counties)

310-948-6408 (Los Angeles and Orange Counties)

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