Navigating your way through a divorce is difficult even under the best of circumstances, but long, drawn-out divorce litigation can hurt you and your family financially as well as emotionally. Rather than shell out considerable money on their own lawyers and court fees, however, many divorcing couples are instead deciding to undergo divorce mediation.
At its core, divorce mediation involves having you and your one-time partner sit down with a single, unbiased mediator to hash out matters relating to your divorce outside of a courtroom setting. Sometimes called alternative dispute resolution, mediation, while not appropriate for all couples, can offer many benefits for separating couples who are able to maintain at least some level of communication between them. Just what are some of the primary benefits of divorce mediation?
Its cost-effective nature
Especially contentious divorces can prove highly expensive, but virtually any divorce that involves litigation will end up costing you a good bit of money. In addition to each having to finance your own attorney, you will also have to factor in court costs, money lost by missing work and so on to determine just how much a traditional divorce may cost you. Comparatively, however, divorce mediation is typically between 40 and 60 percent less expensive than a litigated divorce.
It gives you more control
Parents who undergo divorce mediation are more likely to walk away with joint custody arrangements than those who go through courtroom litigation. This is likely due, at least in part, to the fact that mediating your divorce grants both parties in the marriage more control.
It is easier on children
In addition to making it more likely that a child will end up spending time living with both parents, which is generally advantageous in and of itself, divorce mediation is often easier on children than a litigated divorce. For starters, the very fact that both of you agree to participate in mediation shows your children that you can still work together and communicate for the greater good. Mediation is also typically less stressful than traditional divorce, so your children are less likely to feel anxious throughout the process.
Unless the situation between you and your one-time partner is especially acrimonious, you may be able to save money, time and stress by undergoing mediation.