When faced with the divorce process, it’s easy to assume you’ll square off against your soon-to-be ex-spouse in a courtroom setting. While your case may eventually move to litigation, it doesn’t have to. Many divorcing couples find that mediation is a better way to settle their differences.
Here are some of the many benefits of mediation over litigation:
- You maintain more control over the process
- Less time-consuming than litigation
- Less stressful than litigation
- More affordable than litigation
How does a mediator help?
Unlike litigation, there is no family law judge associated with the mediation process. Instead, both parties sit down with a mediator to work through the issues at hand.
While a divorce mediator doesn’t have the power to make legally binding decisions, they can do the following:
- Facilitate communication between the divorcing individuals
- Ask for clarification when necessary
- Provide information regarding the legal system
- Describe how specific issues are typically viewed by a family law judge
- Share alternatives for solving a problem
How long does it take?
There’s no way of knowing exactly how long mediation will take, as it depends on a variety of factors. Most importantly, both individuals must be willing to negotiate and compromise. Without this, mediation can drag on longer than expected, while also ending up in litigation.
During the first meeting, you’ll identify all the issues to resolve and the manner in which you’ll discuss them. In future meetings, discussions resolve around negotiation and compromise. The mediator can assist in moving the conversation forward. If an agreement is reached, the mediator can draft a final copy for review by both individuals.
Is it necessary to go to court?
As long as you work everything out in divorce and a family law judge approves of the agreement, you’re not required to spend any time in court.
Are you permitted to work with an attorney?
It’s a common myth that you’re unable to work with a family law attorney during mediation. It’s suggested that you closely collaborate with an experienced legal professional, as this will help you prevent mistakes while better understanding your legal rights in Hawaii.
If you’re heading toward divorce, don’t wait to learn more about the benefits of mediation and the process in which it unfolds. This will position you for success.
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