Considerations when searching for a mediator in your divorce

Getting a divorce is a major life event. Whether you spent a few years together or a few decades together, it’s never easy. If you are about to start this process or are in the beginnings of it, you and your future former spouse may have decided that you don’t want to end up in court, especially if you have children.

You think that mediation would be the best route in your case, but you aren’t sure. In addition, you aren’t sure how to pick a mediator. The information below may help.

Signs that mediation could work for you

The following characteristics of a couple for whom mediation would be a good option include the following:

  • You should have ability to be honest with each other.
  • You should strive to work together to make decisions.
  • You both need to accept of the end of the marital relationship.

The two primary situations where mediation would not work are when one party fails to be honest and in cases of some form of domestic abuse. In these instances, a mediator cannot determine whether both parties would enter into the agreement of their own volition.

Signs that a particular mediator would work for you

When looking for a mediator, you may want to consider the following:

  • You should feel comfortable with the mediator.
  • The mediator should let you know about costs up front.
  • The mediator should set up an informal structure that keeps you on track.
  • The mediator should provide you with some ground rules regarding your sessions.

You will discuss personal issues and information at length during mediation. While many mediators can fulfill the last three requirements, the comfort level with the mediator you choose could represent the deciding factor for other Washington couples. If you don’t feel comfortable, you may not be as open as you need to be in order to reach the agreement that will provide you with the most satisfaction.

Even though you will work with a mediator, you still need to make sure that your rights are protected throughout the process. You may want to consider having your own attorney to provide you the advice and assistance you will need as you progress through the mediation. Moreover, you could benefit from having your attorney review your final agreement prior to signing it to make sure it represents your interests.

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