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Mediation: Is It Right for You?

Posted on in Divorce

Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family lawyer, dissolution of marriageWhen a couple chooses mediation for their divorce, they are choosing to forgo traditional litigation in favor of creating their own settlement with help from a mediator, considered a form of alternative dispute resolution. A mediator is a neutral third party who is trained to help divorcing couples work through their issues and reach a settlement that fits both of their needs. Many couples who choose mediation report higher levels of satisfaction with their settlement and better relations with each other after the divorce than couples who choose traditional litigation.

But mediation is not the right choice for everybody. Sometimes, a couple's personal circumstances make them unable to work together openly and honestly. If a couple cannot do this, they cannot have a successful mediation.

Mediation Is Not the Right Choice When:

There is a history of domestic violence. Successful mediation is contingent upon a couple's ability to work together, each experiencing some give and take, to work out a settlement that satisfies them both. When one partner fears for his or her life or safety, it can be impossible to build the honest rapport that a successful mediation requires.

One partner is hiding assets from the other. Hiding assets from one's spouse can significantly complicate a divorce because it requires the court to go through an additional process known as discovery. This takes time, money, and energy from all parties involved.

One or both spouses refuse to cooperate with the court. This can be as simple as failing to sign court documents in a timely manner or as egregious as outright missing court dates. In any case where an individual cannot cooperate with the court, mediation is not recommended. For a mediation to be successful, both partners have to be willing to put in the required effort.

When Mediation Is the Right Choice:

When a couple has a fairly amicable relationship and can work together to reach their settlement goals, mediation can be a great option. If you are considering mediation for your divorce, the first person you should discuss it with is your spouse. Get his or her thoughts about mediation and help him or her understand why you think it is the best option for your case. If you are in agreement about choosing mediation, the next step is to begin working with a qualified divorce attorney with a history of working with mediating couples.

Divorce Attorneys in Kane County

Mediation is not right for every couple ending their marriage, however, it might be right for you. If you are unsure of whether or not pursuing mediation is the best option for your divorce, contact our office to discuss your unique case with one of our firm's experienced Kane County divorce attorneys. We regularly work with couples who choose mediation and can help you determine whether or not this is the best path for you to take. If it is not, we can guide you through the other types of divorce available and help determine which is best for you.

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