If you and your spouse are ending your marriage, the two of you may opt to use mediation to resolve the issues surrounding your divorce, including the division of marital assets and debt, child custody, and child support and alimony, among others.
Through mediation, you and your spouse meet with a neutral third party known as a mediator. This person’s job is to guide the conversation and help the two of you find resolutions to various issues. The mediator does not make any binding decisions but rather assures the discussions remain on the right track. It is important to note that the mediator will not advise the parties regarding the law. You should consult with a family law attorney prior to and during the mediation process so that you are aware of your potential rights and obligations.
Why is mediation preferable to going to court and resolving your issues through litigation? The following are four significant benefits:
- Less time-consuming: Mediation can take much less time than litigation, which often requires you to wait weeks or months before you can get a court date. You, your partner and the mediator meet on a schedule that works for everyone involved.
- Less costly: Going to court can be expensive, because there are various fees and court costs to consider. The costs of mediation are typically 40 to 60 percent lower than those of litigation, according to the American Bar Association.
- Less stressful: The court system can be an intimidating and high-stakes place. Judges tend to be less concerned about the needs and wants of each party and more about resolving the case — no matter what that means to the people involved. Mediation sessions come with much less stress, as you and your spouse can engage in amicable discussions regarding your divorce.
- Better for children: If you and your spouse have children, using mediation to resolve your divorce can be less stressful for them, as well. Generally, a less contentious divorce process will be better for your kids.
If you would like to explore the possibility of using mediation to resolve your divorce, meet with a skilled Pittsburgh family law attorney at Feldstein Grinberg Lang & McKee, P.C.