Helping individuals reach the best resolutions in the most difficult of situations.
Can we Mediate if we can’t talk to each other?
Yes. This is exactly the place for a mediator. Through mediation, parties are encouraged to avoid past patterns and “getting stuck” in what went wrong in the past. Instead, parties focus on what they want in the future, for themselves and their children. Qualified mediators help couples shift into a new and productive way of communicating and problem-solving, even while they are working towards their divorce.
Will Mediation Result in a Legally Binding Agreement?
Yes. Once all the outstanding issues are resolved and a tentative agreement has been reached, that understanding will be memorialized into a formal, written agreement. Once the parties sign that agreement, it will not only be binding as a legal contract, but it will generally be accepted by the Courts should they later wish to finalize a divorce.
Lawyers can help their client understand the law and make informed agreements. It is recommended that at some point before the final agreement is signed, each party consult an independent attorney to review the mediated agreement.
After a discussion to understand the mediation process, the couple, with the help of the mediator, begin by discussing each spouse’s concerns and interests. They gather any necessary information and determine criteria for making decisions. Step by step, the couple, having a chance to be fully heard, and to listen to each other, decides on the type of agreement they seek. The goal is to find a “win-win” result; a comprehensive settlement that is good for both spouses and their children.
What is typically decided in Divorce Mediation?
- Parenting Arrangements
- Child Support
- Property Distribution
- Debt Allocation
- Spousal Maintenance (Alimony)
- Tax Considerations
- Pre-Nuptial Agreements
Mediation sounds good in theory, but still have doubts?
Understandable. This is likely the first time you are going through a separation or divorce and it is understandable that an alternative other than the traditional adversarial process makes you uneasy.
But consider this analogy: If you had a back problem or another physical ailment, would surgery be your first option? I hope not, especially if a different form of treatment is available claiming to offer all the same benefits of a full cure and recovery without any of the significant risks of surgery. At least, you would seek a second opinion.
There is a way of resolving disputes, getting separated, divorced or working out a pre-nuptial agreement without risking the loss of an amicable relationship and/or the ability to have a positive co-parenting plan, not to mention losing an arm and a leg in professional fees. Mediation offers a better alternative of treatment. Considering that 98% of all divorce cases settle before going to trial and since mediation is voluntary and confidential, there is little to no risk in seeing if it will work for you.
Can mediation work if I don’t trust my spouse?
Yes. The mediator is there to ensure that all parties are properly heard and listened to and that both parties come out of the meeting confident in the agreement.