When you’re going through a divorce, coming to a calm agreement with your former spouse is probably the last thing you want. However, mediation can be a great option for resolving your issues quickly and with minimal legal difficulty. Working with a mediator allows you and your former spouse to resolve your issues without appearing in a court. Mediation is a great way to get through a legally and emotionally challenging time with minimal damage.
Mediation works for many couples. If you and your former spouse are able to have a civil conversation, it can be a way to make sure that your divorce is affordable and private. When your divorce goes through the court system, the transcript becomes a part of the public record, where it can be found by your family, friends, and coworkers.
Mediation also allows the spouses to come to a unique agreement, instead of simply working within what the legal system has predetermined as fair. Importantly, it can be the first thing that you work together on after breaking up, which can be good practice if you will need to co-parent moving forward.
However, it’s not a good idea to go to mediation with an abuser. It’s also not a good idea to go through the mediation process if one partner is hoping for a reconciliation. That’s because both parties need to be agreeable and willing to compromise in order for mediation to succeed, since a mediator cannot make legal orders.
How Mediation Works
First, you’ll speak on the phone with the mediator, providing some background information about both of you and your marriage. The mediator will explain the mediation process, and you’ll determine which topics you agree on already, such as if you both agree on who the custodial parent should be or what should be done with the family home. The mediator will also explain what other information you need to collect, like detailed financial statements.
Mediation requires both of you to be open to compromise and willing to listen with an open mind. You need to be able to have an honest conversation with your former spouse, and you need to be willing to think about the things that are important to them.
Your Lawyer and Mediation
You can have a lawyer at your side during mediation, and someone from our team at Merchant Law Firm is happy to work with you. We can also recommend great mediators. Usually, people attend their first session alone, and then bring a lawyer to future sessions to help them understand their legal options.
Once you have come to an agreement, your mediator will write out the agreement and file it with the court. The filing is legally enforceable, which means that if one of you does not hold up your end of the agreement, the other can take them to court.
If you think that mediation is the right route for you, reach out to us. We can get you set up with a mediator and start the process, and make sure that you have the legal support you need.