Mediation

Using a Neutral Third Party to Resolve Issues

In mediation, the couples hires a trained, impartial person to help them resolve specific disputes relating to their divorce. Because the mediator is also an attorney, they have knowledge of the legal requirements of working out a valid settlement. The mediator acts as a guide, encouraging communication between the parties and writing down agreements reached.

The mediation process is a cooperative approach to divorce. Together the parties work with the mediator to understand the issues and develop creative solutions. More importantly, the parties stay in control rather than sitting on the sidelines and leaving major decisions about their life to a judge.

Because of its informality and stress on communication, parties may reach an agreement more quickly and economically. And divorce settlements reached by agreement are more likely to be followed than court-imposed settlements. This can eliminate a lot of post-divorce litigation. Mediation can work for divorcing couples, as well as couples who want a separation but are unsure about divorce.  We offer our own unique version of mediation, also known as the Family Transition Plan (FTP).  Click here to find out more.

Advantages of Mediation

  • The process promotes communication and cooperation.
  • It allows the parties, not the court, to make decisions affecting their future.
  • It promotes positive family relationships by reducing conflict.
  • It's confidential. No public disclosure of personal problems or finances, unlike litigation where both the trial as well as all papers filed, are open to the public.
  • Mediation usually costs less than litigation.

Disadvantages of Mediation

  • Because the mediator is only one person, they cannot personally advise either party. Thus the parties may not be fully informed of their options as they would be in the collaborative law process, or the traditional approach.
  • If one party is dominant, the other party may not be able to fully express their views without the support of their own lawyer.
  • Since the focus is on resolution, the many possible scenarios available to each individual party are usually not explored.