Mediation lets you resolve your divorce case without adversarial lawyers. Some couples are able to resolve every issue in their divorce case before any paperwork is file, and without a third party’s assistance. If that fits your situation, I offer representation for uncontested divorces.
However, just because you do not agree on every issue, does not mean that you need to litigate. Mediation can be a much better option. Mediation is a process wherein the parties meet with a mutually selected impartial and neutral person who assists them in the negotiation of their differences.
The Benefits of Divorce Mediation
- You Control the Outcome. A judge controls the outcome of your divorce case in litigation. You control the outcome of your mediation process. Mediation is completely voluntary, so if you do not like how things are progressing you can simply stop. The same goes for your spouse. This is one of the main reasons why mediation works – both sides have to take into account how the other side will react.
- Less Stressful. Litigation is stressful, and divorce litigation is the most stressful of all. American litigation is based on the adversarial system. That means your spouse’s lawyer will try to cast you in the worst possible light, and your attorney will do the same to your spouse. The theory is that by doing this “truth will out.” Or more realistically, a judge will decide somewhere in the middle of two negative descriptions of the “facts.” For most people living your life though this process is unsettling and stressful.
Mediation is just the opposite. In mediation, both sides are treated with respect. In fact your mediator has an obligation to make sure that is the case.
- Save Money. Litigation is expensive. Depending on the complexity of your case, taking a divorce case all the way through trial might cost each party anywhere from $10,000 to more than $100,000. Fees and costs include expert fees (Accountants, guardians, employment and wage experts, etc.).
Mediation is significantly less expensive, and you can control the costs by keeping mediation sessions on topic.
- Protect Your Children. Even the best divorce is hard on kids. Studies show that divorce mediation leads to remarkably improved relationships between parents and children, and between divorced parents. (Divorce Mediation: Research and Reflections, Robert Emery, David Sbarra, and Tara Grover, 2005.
- Quicker. Divorce litigation is slow. Taking a case all the way to trial, will likely take over one year. And there are divorce cases that were filed years ago, which are still ongoing.
- Customize Solutions. Mediation is not about what a Florida judge would do, or what a divorce lawyer thinks is fair.
- Private and Confidential. Litigation is open forum. Anyone can watch a trial, or dig through a case file. The mediation process is completely confidential. (Except for certain types of criminal activity).
In my role as a mediator I bring my 20 plus years a family law attorney to the mediation tale. However, my role is not to provide legal advice, but rather to act as a neutral to help you and your spouse come to an agreement.
Robert Marble is a Florida Supreme Court Certified Family Mediator.
Mediation is statutorily defined as “…[A] process whereby a neutral third person called a mediator acts to encourage and facilitate the resolution of a dispute between two or more parties.” It is an informal and nonadversarial process with the objective of helping the disputing parties reach a mutually acceptable and voluntary agreement. In mediation, decision making authority rests with the parties. The role of the mediator includes, but is not limited to, assisting the parties in identifying issues, fostering joint problem solving, and exploring settlement alternatives. The mediator has no decision making power. Any agreement reached will be by mutual consent of the parties. A written agreement that is signed may be filed and submitted to the court with the parties consent.
Robert Marble has completed Harvard University Law School’s Program on Negotiation, Mediation and Conflict Management Seminar – a 20 hour interactive program with nationally recognized leaders in the field of mediation
Divorce is one of the ten adverse childhood experiences listed in the “ACE Test”, a test used to predict future mental and physical illness.
– There is no need to make things worse with a custody war