| Rick Igou

Rick is a mediator, arbitrator and collaborative attorney whose office is in Durham, North Carolina. His practice is focused on helping people avoid the financial and emotional costs of going to court by assisting them in crafting their own, personal resolutions to disputes, disagreements and difficult mutual decisions. He has mediated or arbitrated hundreds of cases in a variety of family, Superior Court, District Criminal Court, business and community matters since first training as a mediator in 1990.

Our court system’s adversarial positioning often encourages the escalation rather than the resolution of conflict. The presumption that people must fight can lead to tooth-and-nail, all or nothing litigation that is frequently an excessively expensive, lengthy and ultimately damaging process.

Mediation, by encouraging cooperation rather than competition, offers the opportunity to avoid a fight altogether.

Mediation is particularly effective in situations where there is an established and possibly continuing relationship between disputants: separation and divorce cases — especially where children are involved — as well as family, small business, organizational and community disputes.

Rick is certified by the North Carolina Dispute Resolution Commission as a Superior Court, Family Financial and Clerk of Court mediator, and he is also a Permanency Mediator with the North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts. He serves as an arbitrator in North Carolina District Court District 14, and as a member of the FINRA Board of Arbitrators. He is a founding partner of Elder Matters of the Carolinas LLC, a mediation practice exclusively dedicated to helping families discuss and resolve age-related concerns. In addition to his practice, Rick has volunteered for over two decades as a mediator, facilitator and trainer with the Dispute Settlement Center of Orange County, North Carolina’s first community dispute resolution center, and currently serves on its Board of Directors. He also serves on the North Carolina Supreme Court Dispute Resolution Committee’s Custody and Visitation Mediation Program’s Advisory Subcommittee, and is a Past-Chair of the Dispute Resolution Section of the North Carolina Bar Association.


Associations and Memberships

  • Board of Directors, Dispute Settlement Center of Orange County
  • NC Supreme Court Dispute Resolution Committee’s Custody & Visitation Mediation Program’s Advisory Committee
  • Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Arbitration Panel Member
  • District Court Arbitrator, North Carolina 14th Judicial District
  • North Carolina Dispute Resolution Commission Ex-Officio Member 2015-2016
  • North Carolina Dispute Resolution Commission District Criminal Court Ad-Hoc Committee 2015-2016
  • North Carolina Dispute Resolution Commission District Court (FFS) Program Oversight Committee, 2013
  • Chair, Dispute Resolution Section, North Carolina Bar Association (NCBA) 2015-16
  • Section Council Member, Dispute Resolution Section, NCBA, 2008-2017
  • Co-Chair, Newsletter Committee, Dispute Resolution Section, NCBA 2012-15
  • Co-Chair CLE Committee, Dispute Resolution Section, NCBA 2011- 2012
  • Co-Chair Pro Bono Committee, Dispute Resolution Section, NCBA 2009–2012
  • President, North Carolina Association of Professional Family Mediators 2012 & 2014

Practice Areas & Fees


Mediation is a voluntary process of discussion that works toward mutual agreement, facilitated by a person who is trusted, neutral and impartial. A good mediator helps people have difficult conversations by listening, exploring alternatives and encouraging need-based rather than positional negotiation. The mediator does not make decisions for those involved, but helps guide them to their own, mutually agreeable resolution to their dispute. I have over 20 years of mediation and facilitation experience and am certified by the North Carolina Dispute Resolution Commission as a Family Financial, Clerk of Court and Superior Court mediator. I am also a permanency mediator for the North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts.


Arbitration is a fact-finding and decision-making process. The arbitrator’s role is quasi-judicial, with the arbitrator acting as a neutral to render a decision after hearing evidence and argument from all parties. Arbitration may be voluntary, contractual, or court-ordered, and may be binding or non-binding, depending on the forum. I am an Arbitration Panel Member for FINRA Dispute Resolution and a District Court Arbitrator for North Carolina’s 14th Judicial District, Durham County.

Collaborative Law

Collaborative law is a contractual commitment from parties, attorneys and, as appropriate, other collaborative professionals to work together, diligently, in good-faith and with full disclosure, to resolve conflict without going to court. In the collaborative process, the law is not the sole criterion for decision-making — emotional, relational, financial and other priorities are also considered in seeking a mutually agreeable solution. If the parties later determine that litigation is necessary, the collaborative professionals must withdraw from the process. The collaborative family law process in North Carolina was established by the state legislature in 2003. I am trained in the Full Team Collaborative Divorce process and am a member of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals and the collaborative practice group, Solutions for Separating Better.



  • One hour orientation meeting for either Mediation or Collaborative Law: $100.00. (This amount can be applied toward any fees for any later engagement.)



  • Administrative fee : $175.00 (one time charge)
  • Hourly Mediation fee : $175.00/hr (minimum charge of 1 hour)
  • Flat Fee: A flat fee for mediation may be available in individual cases, depending on the complexity of the matters to be discussed. Please contact me for details.
  • Travel fee : No charge for travel within 1 1/2 hours (one way) of Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill. Cost of further travel or overnight stay negotiable.
  • Postponement/Cancellation Fee: Based on Rule 7(E)(4) of the Rules governing Mediated settlement conferences in North Carolina, but may be waived for good cause. Please contact me for details.



  • Basic Fee: $250.00/hr. A deposit may be required.
  • Flat Fee: Negotiable, dependent on complexity of the matter. Please contact me for details.



  • Fees dependent on complexity of matter. Please contact me for details.



  • If you have completed a Memorandum of Understanding through mediation, I can help you use it to prepare a Separation Agreement. Fees are dependent on the complexity of the Agreement, and can be based on an hourly rate or a flat fee arrangement. Please contact me for details.



  • I offer a sliding fee scale, based on yearly income, for mediation clients of limited means. Please contact me for details.


Location & Contact

Get Directions

For more detailed information about Rick’s practice areas, experience, fees, or to schedule an orientation, please contact Rick at:

Richard J. Igou   1007 Vickers Avenue   Durham, NC 27707   919.682.3517   rick@rjigou.com

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Elder Matters of the Carolinas LLC North Carolina Association of Professional Family Mediators North Carolina Dispute Resolution Commission


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