Why Mediation May Be the Right Solution for Divorcing Parents
Mediation is a tool for resolving disputes between parties. Divorcing parents might consider this alternative dispute resolution viable for equitably dividing assets, deciding custody arrangements, devising parenting plans and calculating child support matters, particularly for child expenses not specifically covered under Minnesota laws. In fact, an attempt at alternative dispute resolution is required in most divorce cases before a judge will hear your case and make decisions on your case.
Before getting embroiled in an unpleasant drawn-out divorce, consider whether mediation is the right choice for you. Potential benefits of mediation include the following:
- Financial savings — Lawyers’ fees, discovery expenses and court costs add up if you are taking your case to trial. Mediation typically minimizes these costs. Even the Court of Appeals requires mediation in most cases. The Minnesota Judicial Branch website points out that “appellate family-law mediation has a great potential to save litigants significant time and money.”
- Expedited proceedings — The court docket is typically full, which means you have to wait for a judge to find room on the calendar to conduct a trial. Using mediation, you can negotiate a settlement during a well-organized session and finalize your divorce quickly.
- Platform for parental cooperation — You and your ex-spouse must continue to work together to raise well-adjusted, healthy, happy children. Mediation sets the tone for agreeing on common grounds and cooperating to find solutions to issues in dispute in the years to come.
- Cordial relationship between parents — Maintaining an amicable relationship can be difficult after you just engaged in contentious litigation. Mediation, on the other hand, helps you to establish the type of cordial parental communication that can make your post-divorce experience less stressful and protect your kids from feeling stuck in the middle.
- Empowerment and control — In court, the judge decides what happens to your property, your custodial rights, your parenting plan and your financial support. You have control over what occurs in mediation and can decide your own terms for your dissolution. Negotiating these terms empowers you to start this new phase of your life with confidence.
You do not have to go it alone at the negotiating table. Your St. Paul family law attorney can help you to prepare for mediation and remain part of the process until you and your spouse reach a favorable agreement.