Focusing On Family Law – And You
Divorce is among the most difficult experiences in a person’s life. There is often significant hurt and uncertainty as spouses move through the divorce process.
Increasingly, divorcing couples are turning to mediation in hopes of resolving issues surrounding divorce, including child custody, financial support and property division.
What is mediation?
In mediation, a neutral third party (known as the mediator) helps parties communicate and identify common ground with a goal of resolving disputed issues.
The mediator does not decide issues or impose their will upon the parties. Instead, the mediator facilitates discussion, with settlement occurring only if both parties agree.
Advantages of mediation
Mediation offers several key advantages over litigating divorce issues.
Resolution of issues through mediation can help parties establish a framework for productive future relations, which is especially important if parties must co-parent.
Settling issues through mediation allows the parties to find a disposition that is workable for them, rather than relying on a decision of a judge. It removes the uncertainty associated with litigation and gives the parties power to craft workable solutions.
Mediation is generally less expensive than litigation, not to mention less stressful. Settlement through mediation also protects the parties’ privacy by avoiding the need to litigate private family issues in open court.
Importantly, both parties must agree to any settlement through mediation. If the parties are unable to agree, they retain the ability to litigate their issues and have a judge decide any disputed issues.
If you are facing divorce, you should consult with a knowledgeable attorney who can discuss the advantages and potential drawbacks of mediation for your case. An attorney can also assist you at a mediation by providing advice as guidance as you work toward settlement.