DIVORCE AND SEPARATION
Mediation is an effective, affordable way to deal with separation/divorce conflict.
Mediation is a process that allows persons to come to their own mutually crafted agreements.
Trained and certified mediators guide couples through a discussion of all the issues that are important to each party. Discussions are private, informal, and confidential. Mediation encourages respect for both parties’ interests as the mediator helps the parties discuss and create solutions acceptable to both parties. A written agreement is then created that may become the basis of documents filed with the court. Each person is encouraged to consult with an attorney before finalizing any agreement.
Typical divorce/separation issues that can be handled with mediation:
- Parenting plans
- Change in child custody
- Financial matters
Time Commitment Involved:
3-5 sessions each lasting 2-3 hours
Sessions are scheduled at the convenience of both parties
Day and evening sessions are available
Benefits of Divorce Mediation
Making Your Own Decisions ~ Mediation recognizes both your ability and responsibility to make your own decisions about your family and life. The mediator meets with both of the parties as a neutral person. The mediator is not the decision-maker – the parties are. The mediator’s role is to help the parties understand each other’s interests, clarify issues, and generate and explore agreement options and possibilities. The mediator cannot force either party to move forward against his or her will.
Generally Saves Time, Money and Energy ~ The pace of the mediation goes as slowly or as quickly as both parties agree it should. Typically, the cost of a mediation session is shared by both parties and most often is considerably less expensive than a litigated case that can cost each party thousands of dollars.
Additional Resources ~Additional resources may be included in the process. These might include counselors, tax advisors, financial planners, and others as warranted by the parties.
Legal Information ~ An attorney-mediator can provide legal information to both parties but cannot and will not give legal advice. “Legal information” usually includes general information about family law procedures, support guidelines, community property laws, and parenting plans. Signed mediated agreements are a legally binding contract and are enforceable by the court.
It’s a Confidential Process ~ Mediation is a confidential process by law and agreement. This means that discussions, notes and proposals made in mediation cannot be disclosed to the court in the event that mediation does not result in a final agreement. This makes it safe to make generous offers to settle the case.
High Rate of Compliance ~ Mediation offers a higher rate of compliance with the terms of an agreement than court-imposed settlements because both parties have worked together to fashion the agreement themselves.