There are many advantages to this approach, which can be modified to fit the circumstances. Notable benefits commonly cited include:
- The ability to create your arrangements rather than leaving it to a judge to decide.
- The process is less confrontational because it enables you to create your settlement collaboratively.
- The process is faster and, therefore, less expensive because there are no court dates.
Preparing for mediation
The process starts by finding an attorney who is comfortable with the format, agrees that it is the right approach, and has the client’s confidence. Then there is some work that the client must do:
- Gather your financial information: This is a part of every divorce, but these details voluntarily provided will be the basis of an essential part of the settlement.
- Prioritize interests, not positions: Rather than fighting in court, the client focuses on what they need, what they want, and what they don’t need or want. Think about “why” the priorities fall in the order that they do.
- Be collaborative: The benefit of this approach is that the two sides can work together to create parenting plans and financial arrangements that are workable for both sides. It also prepares you to revisit an issue with a collaborative mindset when circumstances change.
A positive mindset is a great start
This approach sets the tone for the post-divorce years. If kids are involved in the marriage, the parents will often need to continue to work closely with the coparent to raise the children and meet any challenges the family faces. Those with questions or concerns about how this process could work for them can consult with an attorney who regularly handles divorce mediation.