Many marriages come to an amicable ending. You and your spouse may harbor ill feelings toward each other but are willing to put them aside for a clean break. Or, you two may not be splitting due to mutual antipathy – marriages can fall apart for many reasons. Either way, you may want to consider mediation, which can prove less costly and time-consuming than litigation.
During mediation, you and your spouse will meet with a third party to settle the terms of your divorce. This person, the mediator, cannot provide you any legal advice. But they can help guide you along to the point of settlement. Keep in mind, though, that you may leave mediation without an agreement. If your spouse tries making the process contentious, you could end up in court anyway. And you will have to legalize your divorce with a judge regardless – mediation does not accomplish this.
Yet, mediation remains a worthwhile option. For one, it can save you money. If you and your spouse have significant assets, mediation’s affordability will keep you from spending them on court battles. Furthermore, mediation allows you two to set the terms for your divorce, instead of having a judge make major decisions for you. Mediation may also make sense if you and your spouse have children together. You may find it easier to work out a fair co-parenting arrangement this way. And it will help you two maintain a united front for your kids and set a better example than a litigious split.
Mediated divorces tend to be more amicable than litigated ones. But that does not mean you should go through mediation alone. A family law attorney can guide you through the process and help you reach a fair settlement.