You’re getting divorced, and you and your spouse have agreed to mediation. This is great news because the last thing either of you wants is to hire lawyers and battle it out in court. At the same time, you’re worried about adequately preparing for divorce mediation so that all your wants, needs, and desires are addressed.
This is a common concern for many first-time divorcees. All they want is a fair outcome, yet they’re struggling with knowing where to begin working out the finer details of their divorce and communicating what’s most important to them.
Today’s blog post aims to address those concerns with easy, actionable steps anyone can do right now.
First things first — What is Divorce Mediation?
Mediation is a popular alternative dispute resolution process where divorcing spouses participate and attempt to negotiate a peaceful resolution on various divorce-related matters like child custody, spousal maintenance, and property division. An impartial third person called a mediator (they don’t have to be a lawyer, but many lawyers double as mediators) facilitates these open discussions and is not there to represent one party over the other. They also have zero authority to force either party to settle.
An effective mediator brings objectivity and perspective to each dispute. This allows the parties to negotiate and settle their claims, drastically shortening the conflict resolution process and saving thousands of dollars.
A few additional benefits of divorce mediation include the following:
- A fair and neutral environment
- Improved communication and cooperation
- No need for prolonged litigation
- Less stress, anxiety, and frustration
Preparation Is Important in Divorce Mediation
Divorce mediation is designed to be a win-win for all parties. But we understand any reservations you may have about the process. Therefore, we believe it’s important for all parties to understand what issues are most important to them and what they want the most — even if some of what they’re asking for sounds ludicrous. This way, everything is guaranteed to be addressed, and no one leaves thinking, “I wish I would have said more” or “That could have gone better if I had remembered to do this …”
We advise entering your first divorce mediation meeting with three highly detailed lists.
- Your pie-in-the-sky scenario list — This could include what you envision to be the perfect co-parenting schedule. It could also include specific property or assets that hold sentimental value, who gets the house and why, or even what you think child support and spousal maintenance payments should look like. Write it all down, even if you know your spouse probably won’t agree with most of it.
- What you think is fair to everyone list — With this list, you’re thinking about what’s the most fair outcome for everyone. And by everyone, we mean finding a settlement that still works for you but also considers what’s fair for your children and soon-to-be ex. Essentially, it’s the mediation agreement you’d still accept despite it not being absolutely perfect.
- Your line-in-the-sand list — This is your minimum expectation for each disputable area in your divorce settlement. Admittedly, this may be a more difficult list to come up with, especially after imagining your dream scenario. But it’s important nonetheless because it creates boundaries that you expect to be honored in a successful divorce mediation.
By having these lists at your disposal, you’ll feel more confident about the process and will be able to react accordingly.
Our team at Christman | Daniell Attorneys PLLC understands the significant expense, time, and stress generated by litigation. We also appreciate the power mediation has to cut through the agony of litigation. We are trained mediators and have been involved in hundreds of mediations. Trust us to help you find a middle ground and amicably resolve your divorce.
Please call Christman | Daniell Attorneys, for your legal needs today!
Please consult an attorney for advice about your situation. The material on this website and in this or any blog article we publish are for informational purposes only and do not constitute legal advice. The attorneys at Christman | Daniell Attorneys believe in tailoring legal advice and solutions to your circumstances.
We have an unwavering commitment to helping our clients at each stage of their legal situation.