Mediation is an alternative to litigation in many types of cases. It is a process that is used to resolve conflict by coming to an agreement that both parties can tolerate. It may not be exactly what one party or the other wants, but they often both have some advantages, instead of having a clear winner or clear loser at trial.
Mediation is especially useful in divorce cases because they have unique decisions that must be made, including custody arrangements and visitation, as well as dividing very personal property between the spouses. Judges often do not fully understand or appreciate the value of some property, so they may not be able to effectively divide it between spouses. Mediation allows the spouses to work out their differences without involving a judge. Mediation for divorce also has a variety of other benefits, some of which are outlined below.
It is less expensive than going to trial.
Going through the mediation process involves paying one professional to reach a solution. Both spouses also often have their own attorneys involved. You have one or two meetings with the mediator, instead of spending time filing documents and arguing in front of a court. The solution developed a mediation is faster, easier, and less expensive for everyone involved.
You have full control over the outcome.
When you take a divorce matter to court, the judge ultimately decides how assets will be divided and custody disputes. You often do not have much say in the matter. However, in mediation, you choose which topics you want to discuss and how you want the case to settle. You have much more control in a mediation setting than you do in a courtroom.
It is less stressful on spouses and children.
Mediation is a process in which the spouses work together, instead of the higher conflict process in a courtroom. Mediation may allow the couple to forgo direct disputes and work together to find a solution that will help everyone. Children are especially affected in divorce disputes, especially in the courtroom. Children see their parents working together in the mediation process, and cooperation usually ends with better results for the child as well.
Clients get more personalized attention.
Judges are busy no matter where you file your divorce. They often do not have time to consider your specific needs or desires in a divorce proceeding. The mediator, on the other hand, is focused on your particular case and spends lots of time discussing what you need. Your attorney may also be able to help you negotiate, explore and generate ideas, and work together with the other side. This type of process simply seems to work better for most divorce clients.
Mediations are more likely to be confidential.
A divorce proceeding in a public courtroom is just that—public. If you are concerned about confidentiality, mediation may be a good option for your divorce. Documents, communications, and work notes that are used in the mediation process are confidential and privileged. Even if the mediation fails and you argue your case later, these documents will not be disclosed.
Mediation may be the right option for you. Contact Blair H. Chan, III, PLLC to discuss how you should proceed with your divorce. We have the experience to help you make an informed decision.