It Takes Two to Tango: Does Mediation Ever Work?

In an ideal world, no one would have to face the daunting experience of divorce. Unfortunately, divorce is something many of us will have to go through. While divorce proceedings will always be complicated, the key to managing this difficult time better can often be found in divorce mediation.

Meditation, Health, Fitness,
It Takes Two to Tango: Does Mediation Ever Work?

What is divorce mediation?

Your divorce solicitors will be best at explaining what may happen in your particular case. However, in general, divorce mediation is about you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse deciding the outcome of your divorce in relation to the distribution of assets, child custody and support, retirement, and taxes. 

Mediation is a flexible and confidential way to settle the conflict between you and your spouse and allows for open dialogue and communication. Ideally, divorce mediation allows you and your spouse to work through issues pertaining to the dissolution of your marriage to end the relationship as amicably and cost-effectively as possible.

What will divorce mediation look like?

Divorce mediation is a dynamic legal process that is led by a divorce mediator. Your mediator will be an independent and neutral third party that will help you and your spouse come to an arrangement concerning your divorce. They will help both parties negotiate a mutually acceptable agreement on financial matters and other issues to help you dissolve your marriage. While your mediator will actively participate in the discussion, it will be up to you and your spouse to make the final decisions.

Does divorce mediation work for everyone?

The simple answer is no. Successful divorce mediation requires you and your spouse to come to a final agreement on asset distribution, custody, and finances that are mutually acceptable. However, if your spouse is contesting the divorce, you or your spouse refuse to communicate, there are issues or abuse, or one of you is too angry with the other to agree, then divorce mediation will most likely fail for you.

What happens if mediation doesn’t work?

If your divorce mediation fails to bring about an amicable resolution, you may have to go with a lawyer-driven divorce. In this case, you and your spouse will both employ separate lawyers, and you may end up having to go to trial. In this case, the judge will be the final decision maker, and you may find that you are not satisfied with the ruling.

Which is better?

Overall, divorce mediation is a much better outcome for many couples. Proper divorce mediation is less hostile and more collaborative. They are also more cost-effective, ranging from $7,000 to about $10,000, and are faster to resolve, with many mediated divorces taking only 2 to 6 months to complete. The speed of this will largely be based on how well you and your spouse communicate and how amicable you currently are.

If you have children, a mediated divorce will set the foundation for a healthier and happier life for both you and spouse with your children. Relationships will not strain as much under a mediated divorce and children will not be forcibly separated from one parent due to a judge’s ruling.

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