If you and your spouse have decided to divorce, you may be dreading a costly, combative legal process. You may also have deep concerns about what types of decisions a judge may make on crucial issues like separating your assets, determining support payments and establishing custody and visitation schedules.
However, a litigated divorce is not your only option. If you and your future ex would like to maintain control of the terms of your separation, divorce mediation may help you find a way forward that truly works for your changing family.
What is divorce mediation?
During divorce mediation, you and your spouse work closely with a neutral family law mediator. Rather than make decisions for you, the mediator helps you both to communicate your concerns and preferred outcomes. Once your mediator understands your separate goals, he or she may be able to help guide you toward creative solutions you can both agree on.
Decisions you make during mediation are not legally binding. If the mediation process does not work, you may always choose to pursue litigation instead. You may also find that you can resolve some issues through negotiation, but not others.
How might mediation make your divorce easier?
In addition to saving time and money by avoiding the court hearing process, mediation may lead to better outcomes because you and your future ex each have a say in your settlement.
From figuring out your future financial and living situations to working out an effective, nurturing co-parenting plan, a negotiated, personalized divorce agreement may lead to better outcomes than an impersonal court-ordered decree.