Do the parties always meet together in mediation, or can they meet separately?

There are circumstances in which the parties can meet together in mediation, but it's much more common in family law cases where the parties meet separately. The term we use for that is called a caucus. What typically happens is one party and their attorney, if they have it, is in one room, and the other party and their attorney is in another room. Then, the neutral third-party mediator goes back and forth between the two rooms, trying to resolve all of the issues and trying to reach an agreement, and that would be at the end of the mediation.