What Is Divorce Mediation?
When a couple goes through a divorce, they sometimes seek alternative methods that do not require a trial through court. This may not be possible for all couples, but it can be beneficial for those who wish to discuss their marital issues on their own. One method of divorce that is commonly used by couples is mediation.
The process of mediation gives spouses the opportunity to work together and negotiate the terms of their divorce. It takes place with the help of an unbiased mediator instead of a judge making decisions for a couple. In mediation, the spouses discuss any marital issues that have not been resolved. The mediator listens to both spouses’ sides and assists them in reaching decisions that work best for them and their families. Topics of discussion that take place in mediation may consist of child custody, child support, the division of assets, and alimony.
Benefits of Mediation
There are several benefits to couples using mediation instead of a divorce through litigation. When a couple settles their divorce through mediation, they often feel better about the conclusion of their relationship. The benefits of mediation may include:
- Control: With a divorce through litigation, a judge makes decisions about a couple’s marital issues. Mediation gives the spouses control and lets them make their own decisions about the terms of their divorce.
- Confidentiality: Mediation is confidential. Neither spouse or the third party involved is permitted to share information in mediation or use it against one another. This allows spouses the chance to be open and honest with one another.
- Speed: Mediation is typically a quicker process than other methods of divorce. The duration may depend on the couple and how many marital issues must be resolved.
- Cost: Unlike divorcing through litigation, mediation is cost-friendly. Divorce through litigation can become expensive for the couple as well as the state of New York.
- Choice: Couples have the option to participate in mediation, they are not required to. It is a voluntary process that lets spouses reach positive decisions on their own.
- Family: When a couple uses mediation, it usually benefits any family involved. Trials can often be difficult for spouses, while mediation allows for healthy conversations to take place. This is beneficial for those with children in the family.
How Does the Process End?
When a couple settles their issues and works out the terms of their divorce, the mediator can then draft a Memorandum of Understanding. This is a document that details the agreements made in mediation. The spouses then give the Memorandum to their attorneys, who create a Matrimonial Settlement Agreement. Once this is signed, the spouses attend court as an uncontested case to finalize their divorce.
Robert Pollack is an experienced divorce and family law attorney in Long Island, New York. Contact The Pollack Law Firm, P.C., to set up a free initial consultation and we will be happy to assist you.