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Advantages of Mediation in Divorce

On behalf of Gregory W. Stevens, Attorney at Law on Friday, January 3, 2020.

In many cases, mediation is preferable to going to court, especially for child custody issues. Do not assume that you have only one option -- letting a judge decide -- when you opt to get divorced. Mediation may be a wise decision.

The idea behind mediation is that you get to stay out of the courtroom. You, your spouse -- who will shortly be your ex -- and your mediator sit down together and talk your way to a solution. When you go to court to officially complete the divorce, you just have them sign off on what you decided to do in mediation.

So, what are the advantages of doing it this way? Let's look at a few.

You Make the Decisions

These are your children. You understand that your ex also has a right to see them. That doesn't mean you want a third party, like a judge, to tell you when you can see the kids. With mediation, you make these decisions. No one else tells you what you have to do. The control is yours. You do have to work with your spouse, but you can work together for the good of the children. No one else gets to impact their lives or that relationship.

Relationships Survive

Speaking of relationships, if you have children, you can't completely cut yourself off from your spouse. You will still see each other. Relationships often do a better job of surviving intact if you use mediation. You may get along better in the future and have a better relationship with the kids. Traditional litigation can ruin this relationship.

It's not as Hard for the Kids

Children often feel like litigation is stressful. They feel like they have to take sides. They feel like their parents are using them as bargaining chips. With mediation, they don't see it this way. They don't have to get involved. They understand that their parents are just working together and putting them first.

It may not Take as Long

Maybe you really just want to get through your divorce. You have no interest in spending months doing this. Mediation can be faster. If you and your spouse commit yourselves to making it go quickly, often by agreeing on compromises, it may take weeks or even days. Again, you have more control over the process. You do not have to wait on the court.

What is Right for You?

Mediation is right for some and not for others. Does it give you some advantages that you want to explore? Make sure you carefully consider all of the options you have.