Looking for a less adversarial way to complete your divorce? Mediation might be the path for you and your spouse. A divorce mediator is a neutral third party who will help you and your spouse through the divorce process without having to turn to the court system.
Choosing a mediator is often the first gesture of mutual trust divorcing couples make. While the mediator does not have the power to decide the outcome of your case or represent either party in court, the mediator you choose could have a profound effect on the efficiency and final settlement. In general, here are the duties of a mediator.
One of the most important jobs of the mediator is to maintain order by establishing and enforcing procedural rules. The mediator controls the meetings so that everyone has time to speak, think and respond. The mediator also helps guide both spouses through the steps of the divorce and keeps you both apprised of the next steps.
Your mediator will use knowledge, experience and case-specific analysis to provide various types of information. You might get a prediction of a court decision, an informed opinion on a legal question or clarification of the law, for example.
Mediators are also active listeners. They will listen carefully to what you and your spouse are saying. If something needs clarification or elaboration, your mediator will ask you additional questions or rephrase the issue to get to the root of what you are trying to accomplish. This helps encourage precise language, constructive conversation and accountability.
Last but not least, your mediator is there to think outside the box. If a problem requires outside analysts, such as accountants or tax professionals, it often helps to have a referral from a neutral third party. Mediators also often provide solutions that neither of the parties would have found while pursuing their own goals. Divorce does not need to be a fight. Mediators are key figures in the de-escalation of contentious issues, such as child custody and asset division. The mediator can be a valuable guide in your divorce process; and will be able to help connect you and your spouse with outside resources and give information step of the way.