Divorce can be a stressful experience for most couples. Depending on the type of relationship that existed before the split, a divorce can be destructive for the entire family. Fortunately, there is an option for divorce that relies on cooperation and that takes place outside of the courtroom. Mediation is where a disinterested third party helps former spouses come to an agreement on the terms of their divorce. For some couples, there are major advantages to a mediated divorce.
- Mediation takes place out of court: Mediation does not involve a courtroom or a judge. Instead of a judge, a neutral third party (mediator) helps former couples come to a compromise on the terms of their divorce. Decisions on child custody and the division of property are worked out by couples with the help of a mediator.
- It is less expensive: A mediated divorce is less expensive than a regular divorce. It takes less time and does not involve multiple lawyers or time off work to attend court. You and your spouse work with a single mediator who fits into your busy schedule. There may be fewer disputes during a mediated divorce. With a regular divorce, disputes involve separate court dates and more attorney’s fees.
- Mediation is good for the kids: Divorce is incredibly stressful on children. They may have to contend with you and your former spouse fighting over disputes. Worst of all, they get no say in the terms of the divorce.
- You control the outcome: With a normal divorce, you are at the mercy of your attorneys and the judge. They are the parties that will ultimately decide the outcome of your divorce. This is not the case with mediation, where you, your spouse and your children have control over the outcome.
- Mediation is not adversarial: A typical divorce can become nasty. Attorneys fight over who gets certain pieces of property, where the children go or who gets the dog after the divorce is finalized. Spouses may be encouraged to point out each other’s faults to get the best deal. With a mediated divorce, there is less backstabbing and more cooperation between all of the parties involved. The mediator wants to help you and your spouse create terms that you can agree on.
Is Mediation the Right Choice?
Unfortunately, mediation is not an option for all divorcing couples. Some marriages are in such bad shape that it is unlikely mediation could work. However, if you are willing to work with your former spouse and a neutral third party to create the terms of your divorce, then mediation is an option that you should strongly consider.
If you want to learn more about this option, then you should speak with the experienced San Jose divorce attorneys at the Law Office of Daniel Jensen, LLP.