Mediation can help couples achieve friendly divorce

If you are considering divorce but would like to get through the process as peacefully as possible, you may want to consider divorce mediation. In Texas, mediation is usually required by law as a part of the divorce process. However, you also have the option of choosing to mediate some or all of your divorce-related issues on a voluntary basis, which has the potential to provide a number of benefits over a more traditional courtroom divorce.

Divorce mediation is a process of resolving divorce-related issues like child custody, spousal support and division of property on your own terms. During divorce mediation, you and your ex have the opportunity to collaborate and work out your own solutions with the help of a neutral third party called a mediator, as well as your attorneys. A mediator, unlike a judge, does not have the power to decide how your case will resolve, but instead acts as a facilitator to guide your negotiation process and give it structure. Ultimately, it is up to you and your ex-spouse to resolve your issues in the manner you see fit.

Control over outcomes

For many divorcing couples, this element of control is one of the things that gives divorce mediation its appeal. It is a stark contrast to the conventional courtroom situation, in which the final outcome is determined by a judge who knows relatively little about either spouse or their family's unique needs and circumstances. By giving that power back in the hands of the divorcing spouses themselves, and allowing them to work together instead of pitting their interests against one another, mediation can eliminate much of the uncertainty that comes with divorce.

Another benefit of resolving a divorce through mediation is that it helps to minimize animosity by setting the spouses up as co-collaborators rather than adversaries. Whereas traditional divorce litigation is inherently adversarial, mediation encourages the spouses to work together to find ways to meet both of their interests at once. As a result, it is often possible to reach mutually agreeable solutions that leave both sides feeling satisfied with the outcome. This in turn helps to minimize negativity between the divorcing spouses, which can be particularly beneficial for divorces involving children and ongoing co-parenting.

Along with the emotional and practical considerations outlined above, divorce mediation often makes sense from a financial perspective, since it is typically faster and less costly than resolving a divorce in court.

Whether you mediate or litigate, a lawyer can help

If you choose to resolve the issues in your divorce through mediation, it is still important to get help from a lawyer throughout the process. An attorney with experience in divorce mediation and other family law matters can work with you make sure that you have considered all available options before coming to an agreement and will help you evaluate the potential long-term consequences. In addition, a lawyer will protect your interests by verifying that any agreement you reach during the mediation process is fully enforceable in a court of law.

To learn more mediation and other options that are available to help you settle your divorce as efficiently and amicably as possible, contact the law firm of Lisa E. McKnight, P.C.