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The Benefits of Mediation

Posted on in Mediation and Collaborative Law

mediation, dispute resolution, Illinois family law attorneyMediation is a great method of conflict resolution. The process of mediation involves two disagreeing parties coming together, meeting with a neutral mediator, and working together to find an agreeable outcome for both parties. Mediation is a helpful strategy for any situation involving conflict, but it is especially useful for couples going through a divorce. The process provides flexibility for both parties and more control over the decision making process, and is typically faster and more cost effective compared to other, more aggressive proceedings. If you and your spouse are headed towards divorce, there are many reasons you should consider mediation.

Cost-Effective

Divorce puts a financial strain on many families. Between costly legal fees and time away from work spent battling in court, the costs of divorce can add up quickly. If you and your spouse can tolerate being in the same room as each other, and are prepared to work together to find an agreeable outcome for both of you, consider mediation. Typically, both you and your spouse will only pay one mediator who will work with you together. You will just pay for the time spent meeting with the mediator, which is often relatively cost-effective when split between two people.

Faster Than Other Options

Divorce can be a trying, lengthy process. Mediation is a great way to quickly resolve all of your divorce issues. Many couples wait months for their divorce to be finalized. During a court-resolved divorce, couples have to wait for both parties' lawyers and a judge to coordinate a court date, a process that can take a while. With mediation, your divorce can be resolved in just a few short sessions. Avoid being forced to stay connected to a person you no longer want to be with simply because a court date has not been set yet, and choose mediation. Again, if you can stand your soon-to-be ex enough to work with them, mediation can save you time and money.

Flexibility

Mediation also provides flexibility that other options do not. Couples can choose when and where to meet with a mediator. Courts typically operate during normal business hours and may be backed up with cases, but a mediator can likely meet and work with a divorcing couple whenever he or she is needed. Mediation also allows couples to live in different areas and still collaborate on an amicable divorce outcome. If one partner is out of town, most mediators will work with both parties using Skype or another video conferencing software, or via conference call.

More Confidential

Airing your dirty laundry in front of a courtroom full of lawyers, police officers, and court employees can be embarrassing and overwhelming. With mediation, only those in the room during the mediation process are privy to the information shared. All meeting notes and documents are kept strictly confidential, so any sensitive matters can be discussed without fear of public exposure.

Much Greater Control

If your divorce ends up in court, a judge will likely decide the outcome. With mediation, however, both you and your spouse have much greater control. You can decide what is discussed, and both parties are able to collaborate on reaching agreeable decisions. Many people get stuck with a divorce agreement they dislike, but are forced to accept it because it is court mandated. Working with a mediator allows both parties to ensure they are the ones making the decisions on important topics like child custody and finances, not a stranger. Mediation also allows couples to choose options that might not be available to them through a court given divorce agreement. For example, couples with children are given much greater flexibility when it comes to setting parenting plans and schedules, and are not limited to processes used by the court.

On top of greater control over decision making, mediation also provides both parties with more personal attention. A mediator will listen to both parties and work with them to reach an amicable agreement. A judge, on the other hand, will likely not know the personal details of your divorce case, and will often speak more frequently your attorneys, rather than you and your spouse. Your divorce agreement should be catered to your specific case, and working with a mediator is the best way to ensure this.

Both Parties ‘Win’

Mediation, in contrast to other, more adversarial divorce options, is a great way to ensure an great outcome for both parties involved. Your mediator will be looking for ways to help both you and your ex get the best outcome possible, something that opposing divorce attorneys likely would not do. People often feel the need to ‘win’ their divorce, as in get a better outcome compared to their spouse, but with mediation, both parties can benefit. Through collaboration and problem solving, a mediator can help both sides come to an agreement with which they can both live.

Much Easier On Children

Custody trials can be extremely difficult, especially on children. In a custody trial, your children will likely meet and be observed by a variety of experts, and could even be called upon to provide their opinions to the judge or an evaluator. This creates tension between parents, leading to more conflict, and often causes emotional harm to the children involved. A mediator, on the other hand, can help parents stay focused on the needs of their children, and ensure that the children are being treated sensitively.

Divorcing parents will soon be required to co-parent, meaning they will be working together to both remain present in their children’s lives. To do this, they will need to be willing to work together, and what better practice than divorce mediation. If you and your spouse have children, going through divorce mediation can help prepare you for what is to come as a co-parent. Leaving your divorce with the ability to communicate well with your ex is a major plus. Additionally, if issues come up in the future, you can call on the same mediator you used during your divorce to help resolve the issues. For co-parents, having a mediator on ‘stand-by’ is a very valuable resource.

Mediation is a valuable option for many reasons. If you are currently getting divorced, or believe a divorce is in your future, start exploring your options. At the offices of the Pesce Law Group, P.C., many of our qualified divorce attorneys are also skilled mediators. Call 630-352-2240 to speak with a Naperville divorce attorney today to learn more about your options.

Source:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sherri-donovan-esq/celebrate-mediation-day-t_b_1968763.html

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