What is mediation and why should I use it for my divorce?

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Many divorcing spouses ask what mediation is and why it would be beneficial in their divorce case.  In this article, we will go over those questions and others to look at some of the advantages mediation has over other methods of finalizing a divorce case 

Mediation is considered an alternative dispute resolution.  Instead of going to court and having a judge decide all of the terms of a divorce, spouses may be able to resolve some or all of the issues related to their divorce at mediation. Mediation involves a mediator, who is typically an attorney who acts as a neutral third party.  The mediator typically hosts mediation, either at their office or virtually. At mediation, both spouses will be with their attorneys, but they will be in separate spaces from their spouse and his/her attorney, to help mitigate any potential tension there may be.  The mediator will then work with both parties to try to facilitate an agreement between the spouses to resolve most, if not all, of the issues relating to their divorce.

There are several advantages of going to mediation.  One of the main advantages of going to mediation, as opposed to litigating a case in front of a judge is that the parties have the ability to control the outcome of the result.  For issues to be finalized in mediation, the parties have to reach an agreement; the mediator cannot force any terms of a settlement.  Going to a court hearing takes away all control the parties have in the final result, because ultimately, the judge will make the final decision after hearing all of the evidence.

Another main advantage of going to mediation, as opposed to a hearing in front of a judge is the cost.  Going to and preparing for a hearing in front of a judge is very time consuming and can therefore be costly.  A lot of preparation goes into a hearing.  A lot of time is then spent at a hearing.  Mediation does not involve witnesses, testifying, or presenting evidence, and so naturally, the amount of time spent, and the costs incurred by litigants at mediation is less than what it would be to go to a hearing.

Having a successful outcome at mediation means being prepared and having documentation ready.  Having the right counsel with you can help you navigate the process of mediation, so that you can be fully prepared to have a successful mediation.  The Indianapolis family law attorneys at Banks & Brower, LLC can help guide you through mediation.  Give us a call at (317) 526-4630.  You can schedule a consultation to discuss how our attorneys can help you navigate your case.