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3 benefits of divorce mediation

On Behalf of | Feb 13, 2024 | Divorce |

In Washington and throughout the country, many families have undergone significant strain in recent years. Such strain has often included adverse health conditions, employment loss, financial woes and relationship problems. As for the latter, hundreds, if not thousands, of couples have determined that filing for divorce is the most viable option. If you’re among this group, there are several things you should know, including the fact that you can settle a divorce without going to court through a process called “mediation.”

Mediation is a type of alternate dispute resolution (ADR). There are several benefits of a mediated divorce versus litigation. It is important to learn as much as you can about the process before deciding whether to give it a try because it’s not for everyone.

Mediation won’t work if you and your ex can’t have a civil conversation

Mediation is a term that refers to a series of discussion sessions. There are no requirements regarding how many, so that’s something you and your ex can decide. In fact, the entire purpose of mediating rather than litigating a divorce is so that you have control of the process and can make all the decisions regarding things like child custody or property division.

For mediation to be successful, you and your ex must agree to certain terms ahead of time. For example, you must both agree to speak respectfully and avoid confrontation at all costs. If the two of you usually argue every time you meet in person, then this type of ADR probably isn’t a good fit for you.

Negotiating a settlement this way saves time and money

Two additional benefits of mediation in a divorce are that it typically takes less time than litigation and is a lot less expensive, as well. Each spouse can still hire an attorney to make recommendations and help you protect your interests. However, a neutral third party will act as the facilitator of the meetings, helping you stay on track, avoid conflict and to recommend additional support resources as needed, such as suggesting that your family attends counseling together or that you seek guidance from a financial adviser.

If you determine that mediation is not working out as you’d hoped, you may choose another option for your divorce, such as arbitration or litigation. Most people have a clear idea ahead of time as to whether a mediated divorce is possible in their case. However, if you think it’s a good choice then later discover that you’re unable to achieve a settlement this way, you can convert to another process.