The one thing about divorce that makes a lot of people uneasy is the possibility of losing control over child custody and asset division. If obtaining a divorce were easier, and less stressful, we’d probably see a lot more divorces than we already do. All too often, unhappy spouses delay their divorce proceedings because they’re afraid of what will happen to their marital property and more importantly, their children.
Fortunately, there is a solution that allows spouses to maintain the utmost control over the divorce process and it’s called mediation. So, is divorce mediation right for you? Read on as we discuss the basics of divorce mediation and how it works.
What is Divorce Mediation?
Most spouses are reluctant to dive into divorce litigation and reasonably so. A full-blown court battle is a costly endeavor and it can create a great deal of stress on all parties involved, especially if the couple has minor children. For these reasons and more, divorce mediation is a popular alternative method of negotiating a divorce settlement.
With divorce mediation, the spouses, or in some cases the spouses and their respective divorce attorneys, hire a mediator (a neutral third party) to help them resolve all of their divorce-related issues. The mediator is not a judge and he or she does not make any decisions for the couple. Instead, the mediator acts as a facilitator to help the couple determine what is best for them.
What are some of the benefits of mediation?
- It is far less expensive than a court trial.
- In most cases, mediation ends in the couple reaching a divorce settlement.
- It is confidential, and the sessions are not public record.
- It allows the couple to arrive at their own resolutions rather than having solutions imposed upon them by a judge who doesn’t know the spouses personally.
- The spouses can still have a divorce attorney give them legal advice if they wish.
- The process encourages good communication between the spouses and helps them avoid conflicts in the future.
Mediation Isn’t Right for Everyone
While mediation is absolutely worth it for most couples, it’s not right for everyone. For example, if you’ve been in an abusive marriage, it may be in your best interests to avoid mediation and simply hire a divorce lawyer to represent you. Also, if you’re concerned that your spouse will delay mediation proceedings to avoid paying child support or temporary spousal support, you may need to go to court right away.
To learn more about the emotional and cost benefits of divorce mediation, contact
Burch, Coulston & Shepard, LLP to explore your options.