Divorce, though not an easy process to go through, does not have to be as dramatic as television shows and movies make it seem. Most couples do not need or want to fight things out in court. This is why many divorcing couples in Texas are choosing mediation to approach the dissolution of their marriages.
What is mediation? How do I know if it can work for me? What if I still want to have an attorney?
Mediation is an alternative conflict resolution method in which both spouses agree to meet in a neutral location in order to hash out the terms of their divorce. A mediator also attends these sessions to help keep things moving. The person in this position is not there to take sides.
Mediation can work in most divorce cases, even if they involve children, financial support issues and complex assets. It all comes down the willingness of each party to communicate and negotiate.
How long does this process take and what are the benefits?
Mediation can take as many session as you and your spouse need to figure things out. Some people are finished with mediation in a matter of weeks, others take months and some take years to finally reach an agreement.
There are several known benefits of mediation. Some of these include:
- Money savings
- Time savings
Litigating a divorce case takes a lot of time and resources. It also makes your private matter a public one. Most people want to avoid all of that if at all possible.
Can I still have an attorney?
Yes. Just because you choose to mediate your divorce case does not mean you waive your rights to legal representation. You have every right to have your attorney of choice present during mediation sessions, or you can have your legal counsel review proposed terms before your divorce becomes official. Talking to an experienced attorney about your divorce will help you make informed decisions, which will allow you walk away from your marriage with a fair settlement.
Mediation is not a good fit if one party is using it to take advantage of the other. It is not a good fit if spouses cannot communicate effectively. It is not a good fit if either party is unwilling to budge on his or her demands. Mediation is a good fit for those who want to end their marriages amicably and without going to court. If you are unsure if mediation is right for your divorce, it is okay to do more research on the subject and ask questions.