What Is Divorce Mediation?

When you're getting a divorce, it's important to know all your options for getting the best settlement possible. Mediation is one of the paths that you can take during the divorce process that can help you reach a fair settlement. If you're currently separating from you spouse and are beginning the proceedings, it may become important for you to know about mediation as an option.

What is divorce mediation?

Family law mediation, or divorce mediation, is an option for divorcing couples seeking an alternative to court. During mediation, a neutral third party is hired to help the couple work through their separation agreement. Both parties must agree to participate in mediation. The mediator cannot force either party to participate in mediation, nor can the mediator force the parties to come to a settlement agreement.

What is the advantage of mediation?

Because mediation takes place outside of court, it is a cost-effective way of separating from your spouse. Mediation works for many divorcing couples because it allows them to work together to form an agreement, instead of fighting through lawyers.

Since the decisions made in mediation are made by the divorcing couple, many may find it easier to uphold the terms of the divorce after the procedure is finalized. In addition, the experience of going through mediation is an excellent way to learn to work with your divorcing spouse. Knowing how to negotiate and cooperate with your ex-spouse can be especially important if you and your spouse have children together. 

How do you find a mediator?

Interview candidates in your area. When you meet with the mediators, find out how long each candidate has been working as a mediator, how many cases each candidate has successfully settled, and what their mediation techniques are like. It's important to choose a mediator who makes you and your divorcing spouse feel comfortable.

Do you still need a lawyer if you decide to go through mediation?

If you decide to go through mediation, you should still hire a lawyer who can follow your progress and determine whether or not the mediation is proceeding fairly for you. Before you agree on a settlement, have your lawyer look over the terms to ensure that they are in line with your best interests and that everything being agreed to is legally sound. 

For more information about mediation, talk to a law firm like Tweyman Martin & Assoc. They will be able to tell you more about the process and help you get started with mediation.