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4 Key Benefits of a Mediated Divorce

When most people think about divorce, they imagine an ugly battle playing out between two disenchanted spouses in a courtroom—but it doesn’t have to be this way! There are alternative ways to obtain a divorce besides litigation, one of the most common of which is the mediation process.

Mediation is a form of Alternative Dispute Resolution whereby the divorcing couple sits down with a trained, neutral mediator who guides discussion between the spouses in order to resolve the various issues that must be settled in their divorce. Below we have outlined four key benefits to employing this process for your divorce.

Control

When you get divorced, it feels like there is a never ending list of things that must be decided. The longer you are married, the more your life becomes intertwined with that of your spouse, and the more challenging it will be to detangle that web. Decisions must be made regarding your assets, your debts, child custody, visitation, potential child or spousal support payments, and more. These decisions will have major ramifications for your life as well as that of your children and your spouse. Ask yourself, would you rather leave these major life decisions up to a court, or would you rather have control over the outcome?

Most of us desire to exercise control over any decision that impacts our lives, and divorce decisions are no different. The mediation process provides couples with explicit control over the various issues that must be decided, and more freedom to develop creative solutions that may be unique to their situation.

Efficiency

By virtue of a less formal process and structure, most mediations result in a much more efficient divorce process. You will have more flexibility in scheduling mediation meetings since you will not need to fit them into an already crowded court docket. Additionally, as opposed to litigation where couples will battle it out in court to achieve their own goals, mediation encourages couples to work together to resolve the various issues that must be decided in their divorce. Two people working together to achieve a resolution is almost always much faster than two people working against each other’s interests.

And best of all, efficiency almost always results in better cost-effectiveness. To put it simply, the faster your divorce is resolved, the cheaper it will usually be.

Privacy

One of the main drawbacks to taking a case to court is that you will essentially be required to air all of your dirty laundry. Divorces are intensely personal and emotional situations, and few people want the details of their marital strife to be open to the public—and court hearings are usually public record. Mediation affords you the opportunity to end your marriage in a safe, confidential environment, which also helps to minimize the involvement of your children—as we will discuss in the next point.

Children

All three of the aforementioned points generally result in better outcomes for your children. In a litigated divorce, you can expect your children to be much more involved in the process, requiring the child to meet with an attorney appointed to protect their interests, and oftentimes having to visit with the judge in his or her chambers. Mediation helps shield them from much of the ugliness that can occur in a dissolution. Additionally, the less adversarial nature of mediation sets the foundation for better co-parenting and cooperation between parents following their divorce, which is widely recognized as being a key component of helping children cope and adjust to the major changes occurring in their life.

Mediation is not perfect for every divorce, but for those who are able to utilize this process, there are many important benefits. If you are considering a divorce and think mediation could be right for your family, please contact the Hollwarth Law Firm at (903) 234-0711 today to discuss your options.

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