When a couple is divorcing, navigating the process and coming to an agreement about how property should be divided, debts should be paid, and custody should be determined can be extremely complex, if not very contentious. In order to reach a settlement, parties to a divorce have a couple of options: they can mediate their divorce case or they can pursue litigation.
What Is Divorce Mediation?
Divorce mediation refers to a voluntary process in which divorcing parties make decisions about how to settle their divorce by working with a third-party mediator. The mediator is neutral, and their job is not to make any decisions about the outcome of the divorce, but rather to facilitate a collaborative process between the two parties. In a divorce mediation, both parties will have a say in the final outcome of the divorce case. It is important to note that since the mediator is a neutral third-party, each side may still want to hire or consult with their own individual attorney, to look out for his or her own interests in the divorce.
Advantages of Divorce Mediation
There are many advantages to pursuing divorce mediation over litigation. These include:
- Cost. Choosing to mediate a divorce rather than take the case to court can be a more cost-effective option.
- Time. Not only can litigation be more expensive, but it also takes longer and is a more time-intensive process. For a quicker option for finalizing your divorce, mediation is recommended.
- Reduced conflict. One of the biggest advantages of choosing divorce mediation is that doing so is often much less contentious than is litigation. This is important both for yourself and for any children that you have. Keeping children out of the courtroom and instead collaborating with your spouse to resolve issues in a divorce case can reduce stress and the emotional scars that are often associated with a divorce.
- Choice and autonomy. One advantage of mediation that shouldn’t be overlooked is that when mediating a divorce, you will have much more autonomy and an ability to reach customized solutions that you design than you would if you litigate your case. When your case goes to court, a judge will make a determination; when you meditate your case, you and your spouse get the final say as to how the divorce should be settled, which can be empowering.
- Accessible remotely. During the pandemic, another consideration when choosing mediation vs. litigation is that mediation is a process that can easily be engaged in from a remote location.
Call Attorney Heather M. Ward Today
At the office of Heather Ward Law, our experienced Massachusetts divorce lawyer wants to help you secure the best outcome for your divorce. To learn more about how Attorney Heather M. Ward can support you as you navigate the divorce process, as well as our services pertaining to divorce mediation, please send our law firm a message or call us directly at (617) 903-8955.