Mediation is a process for resolving conflict and coming to an agreement where both spouses control the outcome of the divorce. A disinterested third party, known as the “mediator,” assists the parties in determining a mutually acceptable divorce settlement. In contrast to hotly-contested court litigation, mediation emphasizes cooperation, problem-solving, and address all needs of those involved.
The following are several benefits of mediation in the event of a divorce:
- Less costly than court litigation – Lengthy divorce battles and trials have resulted in the financial ruin of many families. Since divorcing families already experience enough financial strain, mediation is the best way to go as far as fewer expenses. For instance, the parties are just paying one professional—the mediator—to help them, as opposed to their having two separate lawyers.
- Results in a must faster resolution – Instead of waiting for months for court dates or for opportunities when two lawyers and a judge can coordinate their calendars, parties are able to set their own timeframe for resolving their issues. Additionally, mediators are more able to work around your family’s hectic schedule, as opposed to a court, with its strict operating hours and overflowing dockets.
- The couples have complete control over all decisions – The mediator helps both parties discuss the divorce issues that need to be resolved. The parties make the decisions together in all of their significant issues. In regard to litigation, all of the decision-making is in the hands of the judge.
- It is a collaborative process – Mediation is often referred to as a “win-win” resolution since the parties have more time to look past their issues to find commonality—and then go from there. When a couple goes through the courts, it is considered a “win-lose” situation, meaning that each party is looking to win—despite how detrimental it can be for the other party.
- More confidential – All documents, communications, and work notes made or used during mediation are considered confidential. On the other hand, you will argue your case in a public courtroom in front of a judge and others during litigation.
- It protects your kids from conflict – During court litigation, your children will be required to be interviewed and observed by several experts in the event of a custody dispute. Furthermore, your kids may even be required to appear in court. Animosity between parents can increase substantially during hotly-contested divorces, exposing children to increased conflict and tension, which can result in lost-lasting damage. By contrast, a mediator can work with parties in a neutral manner and keep the focus on the children’s needs.
- Opportunity to create a more creative family plan – Since those involved in mediation do not have to work within the restrictions of the court system, there are free to create plans that fulfill their needs.