Many spouses filing for divorce may feel like they’re climbing uphill. The challenges and stressors of dividing property, drafting parenting plans and determining alimony can cause conflict between spouses, making for a painful divorce. However, many couples have another option.
Many divorcing couples turn to mediation to negotiate their divorce plans. Mediation offers several benefits to spouses, including producing more satisfactory divorce resolutions.
Benefits of working with a mediator
Using mediation instead of traditional courtroom litigation to draft divorce agreements is on the rise. This trend can attribute its rise to the following benefits:
- Choice of mediator: Spouses together choose their neutral mediator. This individual will help disputing parties reach a mutually beneficial conclusion through empathy and discussion. Mediators can impart listening and teamwork skills that will guide spouses toward understanding and cooperation.
- Increased convenience: Mediated negotiations do not depend on a courtroom schedule. Spouses can schedule their sessions whenever, and wherever, is convenient for them, their mediator and lawyers. With courtroom litigation, a judge may schedule a civil case like divorce months or years down the line. Mediation allows the divorce to begin quickly.
- Reduced costs: Since mediation does not require a courtroom, spouses will not incur court fees, decreasing overall costs. Courts sometimes pay for the fees of a mediator, and attorneys often charge lower rates for mediation.
- Confidential proceedings: Unlike courtroom litigation, mediated discussions do not enter into public record. All things said in a heated courtroom could come back in future disputes. Parents may find this confidentiality particularly helpful.
- Better results: Many people report greater satisfaction with mediated resolutions than those handed down by a judge. People who work together to draft a mutually beneficial agreement tend to stick to those agreements, whether negotiating asset division or child custody.
Work with a local attorney
Those with questions about mediation can find answers with a local attorney familiar with family law. A lawyer can help spouses prepare for a divorce, offering guidance on paperwork to assemble and suggestions on best practices.