What is Mediation?
Mediation is a process whereby the parties to a dispute, rather than a judge or a jury, determine the outcome. The mediator also does not decide the issues for the parties but rather is a neutral person who facilitates discussions between the parties and helps create options that will work best for their unique situation. Parties to a divorce are in the best position to determine what happens to their future and their family. The process is completely voluntary. It is also entirely private and confidential.
Once you have come to an agreement the mediator will draft a memorandum of understanding. The memorandum will then be reviewed by an attorney and memorialized into a separation agreement for presentation to the Court. The parties will then then present the agreement to the Court for approval.
Why is Mediation Better?
You are in total control of the outcome of the process. Mediation provides a forum where you can fully discuss the issues and present various options until you reach agreement. In Court the Judge will decide what happens to your assets, your financial future and your children.
Mediation is also less costly, less stressful and quicker than a litigated divorce.
What if We Don’t Reach an Agreement?
If no agreement is reached the parties can then file the case in court and have the Judge decide the issues.
How Long Does it Take?
The Length of the mediation depends on the number and complexity of issues. Most mediations can be completed within 4 to 6 sessions. Each session lasts 2 hours.
How Much Does it Cost?
A typical divorce mediation will last between 8 and 12 hours. The mediator is compensated by the hour for time spent at mediation and reviewing materials.