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What is Divorce Mediation?

Divorce mediation is an alternative to traditional litigation. A San Diego divorce mediator is a neutral third party who acknowledges your emotional and practical concerns, while helping to negotiate an agreement between you and your spouse. We work with both parties to resolve key issues, including visitation, child and spousal support, custody, property division, and debt. At the end of this process, our office creates a settlement agreement for your divorce. A divorce mediation may take one or more sessions in order to fully address all provisions in the agreement.

Divorce mediation falls under the category of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) for divorce cases. If your divorce doesn’t need third-party legal intervention, you can and should opt for divorce mediation. Why? Because it makes the divorce process easier and emotionally less straining.

Avoid Problems With Mediation

Divorces are more than legal issues. Every divorce leaves a deep impact on both parties and anyone close to them. Through divorce mediation, you can avoid many of the potential problems – both legal and emotional – of going through a full-fledged divorce. 

There are no specific rules for divorce mediation in California, but mediators typically follow a standard process. The mediator will meet with both parties to discuss the issues and help them reach an agreement. Experienced attorneys are of the opinion that divorce mediation is a better alternative in almost all divorce cases. If you are at a difficult stage in your marriage, consider divorce mediation instead of traditional divorce litigation.

Is Divorce Mediation In San Diego Right for You?

Our San Diego divorce mediation attorneys believe that mediation is the way of the future. Based on our experience, couples are generally more willing to comply with a solution they have agreed to themselves rather than having a third party dictate how they will conduct future important aspects of their lives. Mediation can also provide a sense of closure to a relationship which has gone sour. The process of divorce is one of the most difficult times in life, and finding the energy to work towards a mutually cooperative agreement is sometimes impossible.

We aim to help both parties work through the legal issues so that, on a going forward basis, they can reasonably co-parent their children and divide their assets in an atmosphere that is cooperative with a professional who helps to deflate the emotions. Mediation avoids the conflict of “you vs. me” polarization of the court system because the divorce agreement is worked out and mutually agreed upon by both spouses. Divorce mediation focuses more on solutions and the future. It is not intended to bring you and your spouse back together. The process of mediation helps draw up a plan for living apart; the mediator’s job is to help each of you get on with your lives as separate individuals.

What are the Benefits of Divorce Mediation?

Mediation is a confidential, practical and effective way to resolve problems with the help of an impartial third party such as a San Diego divorce mediation attorney. It is a non-adversarial, informal and flexible approach to conflict resolution, where the parties generally communicate directly; the role of the mediator is to facilitate communication between the parties, assist them in focusing on the real issues of the dispute and generate options for settlement.

Unlike a judge, commissioner, or arbitrator, decision making authority does not reside with the mediator, but rather with the parties seeking to resolve the dispute. The Courts may sometimes divide your belongings together 50/50 and overlook the personal or emotional value of specific items. Both parties are directly involved in the negotiation of the settlement, which also enhance the likelihood of continuing a civil relationship between both parties by using mediation. The agreements reached by the parties are incorporated into the divorce judgment and become an Order of the Court. Mediation, particularly in a family law setting, provides a viable option for those who prefer to stay out of Court, but does not take away your right to take your case to Court or Trial if mediation breaks down.

Benefits Both Parties

Divorce mediation is beneficial for both parties going through a divorce. For starters, estranged couples are more likely to settle for a mutually agreed-upon agreement instead of agreeing with what a third-party entity says. 

Reduces the Duration of a Divorce

Divorce mediation is also beneficial in that it can help reduce the duration of a divorce and the legal fees associated with it. Moreover, mediation is confidential, and neither party can use the mediation process against the other.

Help Coming to an Agreement on Difficult Aspects of Divorce

In the divorce mediation process, the mediator helps both parties come to an agreement on all the important aspects of their divorce, such as child custody, property division, spousal support, and debt. 

Divorce disputes are almost always related to these issues. If your divorce mediation lawyer can settle these key subjects, you wouldn’t feel the need to go through a traditional divorce. 

Other potential advantages of divorce mediation include:

  • Reduced cost;
  • Less emotional stress;
  • Flexibility with rules and procedures;
  • Control over what decisions are made;
  • Focus on issues not personal conflict;
  • Confidentiality; and
  • Encourages parties to negotiate in good faith toward a resolution.
  • It is less stressful and emotional
  • Issues such as child custody, division of property, and spousal support can be resolved without going to court

When Divorce Mediation is not an Option

Divorce mediation is a great alternative to traditional divorce litigation, but it isn’t for everyone. For example, if either party is not committed to or willing for a mediation, no lawyer would be of any help. 

If one party is unable to be respectful or civil to the other party, or there is a history of domestic violence, divorce mediation would not be appropriate either. Also, if the parties are very far apart on their settlement proposal, it might be better just to go to court and have a judge make the decision.

Before Committing Make Sure You Have These Things

Before committing to divorce mediation, you must ensure that you have all the facts about your partner. If you believe that your partner is hiding any information, don’t commit to the mediation. It could end up at your disadvantage. 

Ask Your Partner About Debts And Assets

Make sure to ask your partner about any debts and assets that they may have. Ask about their income and budget as well. Find out what your partner’s goals for the future are. This will help you determine what is important to them and what they may be willing to compromise on. You should also be sure about your partner’s fidelity. 

Be Comfortable with your Mediator

In addition, you must make sure that you are comfortable with the mediator. The mediator should be someone who is impartial and who will not take sides. The mediator should also be someone who is experienced in divorce mediation.

Contact The San Diego Divorce Mediators At Garwood Attorneys

Consider divorce mediation if you want the smoothest conclusion to a marriage. As with any legal process, the attorney you choose to work with can make a world of difference. 

The best divorce lawyer will be someone who creates an effective divorce strategy and provides calm, steady counsel throughout the process. A great divorce lawyer will also be economical and will do everything possible to avoid a long, painful divorce trial. In San Diego, divorce mediation attorneys are not just divorce lawyers — they are specially trained in divorce mediation.

If you are in need of mediation, contact Garwood Reeves today at (619) 692-8100 for a consultation with one of our skilled San Diego divorce mediation attorneys.