There are many benefits of settling your divorce in mediation, including the ability to save both time and money. When you also consider the fact that it can minimize stress and tension, it’s easy to see that it’s well worth your consideration.
A divorce mediator is a neutral third party trained to help divorcing couples resolve their differences. There is no guarantee of success, as both individuals must be willing to negotiate and compromise, but a mediator will take a variety of steps to help move the process along.
Here are some of the things you can expect from a mediator:
- Organize the process: During your first mediation session, the mediator will give both individuals time to talk so they can lay out their primary concerns. The more organized you are up front, the easier it is to make progress in the future.
- Help both parties understand the other: If there is any gray area, such as if you don’t understand the point your soon-to-be ex-spouse is trying to make, the mediator can step in to provide clarity.
- Provide information regarding the legal system: For example, you may have questions about child custody and child support. The mediator can provide basic information to help you better understand the legalities of important details.
- Ask questions: For the most part, your mediator wants to stay out of the way so you can negotiate and make compromises based on your individual wants and needs. However, there are times when they’ll step in to ask questions, as this can help clarify a point.
- Discuss alternatives for resolving issues: If mediation has come to a halt, they can talk to you about arbitration and litigation. Learning more about your alternatives will help you decide what to do next.
A divorce mediator does not have the same power as a family law judge. They’re available to mediate discussions, not make legally binding decisions on your behalf.
The key to success with mediation is to keep an open mind, so that you negotiate in good faith. When you do this, while also taking steps to protect your legal rights, everything will begin to come together.