Benefits of Divorce Mediation
Reason Number One: Divorce Mediation Works!
The biggest benefit of divorce mediation is the undisputed fact that it usually works. Most divorce mediation concludes with an agreement that satisfies both parties at a fraction of the cost of a litigated divorce. Litigated divorces by contrast involve attorneys, judges, courtroom appearances, exhibits, motions, time away from work and children, stress and sometimes tears. When people involved in a divorce speak, listen, reflect, propose, and negotiate, they often agree. Between 70% and 90% of mediated cases end in an agreement.
More Reasons to Mediate Before You Litigate Your Divorce
- Mediation is confidential. Only the agreement is filed in court. The parties control the information that is included in the agreement.
- Mediation is inexpensive. The cost of one mediator is shared. Some mediation is free. The cost of a mediated divorce is generally believed to be less than 10% of the cost of a litigated divorce.
- Mediation is fast. Many issues can be resolved in a single appointment.
- Mediation can be scheduled at times convenient to the parties. Often mediation sessions are held in the evenings or on weekends.
- Mediation can begin before the parties divorce or separate. There is no need to wait for the completion of a six or twelve month separation period.
- Mediation can happen at any location convenient to the parties, as long as the location is private – around the kitchen table, in a church classroom, or in a private room at the local library.
- Mediation can occur without an attorney. While the advice of an attorney is recommended before signing any agreement, an attorney is not required to mediate.
- Mediation can preserve relationships. Arguing in court can destroy relationships.
- Mediation allows the parties, rather than a judge, to be in charge of what happens. Parties tend to be happier with an agreement they come up with themselves.
- The mediator is a “neutral third-party” who can help parties communicate better than they can on their own.
- Mediation looks forward rather than backward. It doesn’t assign blame or punish. It just helps the parties figure out what will work for them in the future.
- The mediator writes up an agreement that reflects what the parties want to see happen. That agreement can be filed in court.
- If mediation fails, it may still narrow the issues that need to be litigated, producing an agreement for many of the issues, and saving money in the long run.