You and your partner have decided to end your marriage amicably. Though the dissolution of a marriage can be emotionally stressful, it also presents an opportunity to create a healthier household for you and your family. An unhappy relationship affects your mental and physical health; if you have children, it can be emotionally difficult for them as well.
Divorce mediation is less expensive, quicker and less stressful than a divorce trial. Guided by a neutral third party, or mediator, couples can cordially discuss and resolve divorce-related issues outside of a courtroom. Mediation empowers couples to determine the outcome of the dissolution of their marriage on their terms. Consulting with an experienced divorce lawyer trained in conflict resolution will help your mediation process go smoothly. If you and your partner have decided that this process is ideal, let’s look at five tips for successful divorce mediation.
1. Hire an Experienced Divorce Lawyer
It is best to have an experienced divorce lawyer throughout your mediation. They can help you determine if mediation is ideal for your situation. It is essential to be clear on your legal rights before and during the process. A divorce lawyer can help you select a mediator, prepare legal documentation to ensure you meet required deadlines and review your settlement agreement before signing and filing it in court.
2. Be Willing to Compromise
Divorce can bring up feelings of contempt, grief and rage that ignite a desire for compensation or to exact revenge. However, a successful mediation requires both sides to set aside emotions and compromise. You need to be open to negotiation and make rational decisions for the greater good over the long term, especially if minor children are involved.
3. Create a List of Possessions
Providing a clear picture of your financial landscape will help avoid a lengthy divorce mediation process or having your divorce pushed to litigation. To arrive at an equitable division of assets, you and your spouse must prepare a comprehensive list of marital assets and debts. Be clear and have supporting documents for the value and quantity of assets, such as:
- Real estate value and mortgage arrangements
- Bank accounts
- Stock portfolios and other investments
- Critical health and life insurance policies
- Credit cards
- Motor vehicle values and loan arrangements
- Retirement accounts
4. Outline Your Priorities
Clearly outlining what your priorities, expectations, and financial responsibilities will be after your divorce helps your mediator understand the end game. Consider what your lifestyle will look like. Will you stay at home or go back to work? What extra expenses may be incurred from scheduling visitation with the children? Will you require additional daycare services? Having a plan helps you and your meditator set realistic goals for drafting your divorce agreement.
5. Have Your Settlement Reviewed
Once your divorce mediation has concluded and you have received your settlement agreement, it is best to go over the details with your lawyer before signing. Ensure that you clearly understand all the terms and that your legal interests have been met. A mediation settlement is binding, and you want to ensure there are no ambiguities in your agreement that could extend the process.
Divorce Lawyer in Surrey
An experienced family lawyer is an asset as you go through your divorce mediation. At ALG Lawyers, our knowledgeable and experienced lawyers understand how important it is to get back to your normal routine. They will guide you through the mediation process, advise you on your options and review your documents to save you time and money.