Seven Advantages Of Divorce Mediation
While the breakup of your marriage may not be something you would have wanted for yourself or your family, you do have options in terms of how you get through your divorce proceedings. You and your spouse can become embroiled in costly and time consuming court battles that take up to a year or more to eventually resolve. These situations often involve money, property, or child care arrangements which, if you are willing to let go of some of the anger or resentment you may feel towards your spouse, can often be resolved through mediation.
Mediation is a process that may be used by the courts to settle disputes in divorce matters in which neither party can come to an agreement. Under Section 61.183 of the Florida Statutes, mediation is often used in parental responsibility and time sharing determinations as a way of encouraging the couple to work together in the best interests of the child, and can also be used to settle contested issues related to marital property division and support.
The Florida Courts advise that the goal of mediation is to try to get both parties to come to mutual agreements, rather than having judgments handing down in court. While mediation may not be the best option for resolving conflicts in every case, it does offer the following advantages:
- It allows you, your spouse, and each of your attorneys to discuss matters with an impartial third party trained by the court.
- It allows you a certain amount of self-determination in resolving the issues you and your spouse have.
- It can help you overcome communication problems, which could continue to impact your relationship even after the divorce.
- It allows you flexible in making arrangements that work best for your situation.
- It allows you to willingly enter into an agreement, rather than having to obey a court judgment.
- It provides confidentiality in all the issues discussed.
- It can save time and money over formal court proceedings.
While mediation may seem less formal and more flexible than a standard court proceeding, it is important to be aware that any agreements made during the process are legally binding in court.
Getting the Most Out of Mediation
To get the most out of mediation, the Florida court advises the following:
- Be organized. Have all the information and evidence you need prepared.
- Be punctual. Being late could result in additional costs, while starting the proceeding on the wrong foot.
- Be focused. Have a clear idea of your goals in mediation.
- Get representation. Make sure to have an experienced attorney by your side to guide you through the mediation process.
If you have questions about mediation or concerns over whether it is applicable in your divorce case, contact the Vanessa L. Prieto Law Offices, LLC. We will be happy to arrange a free consultation in our Fort Lauderdale office so you can discuss your situation with our experienced Florida divorce attorney.