Wheaton IL divorce mediation attorneyWhen you are getting a divorce, there are several ways to complete the process of dissolving your marriage. One way is through traditional litigation, which leaves the issues of the divorce to be decided by the court. You and your spouse could also attempt to negotiate the terms of your divorce on your own, or perhaps each with your own attorney providing guidance. However, many couples find that the process of mediation is the most efficient and effective divorce method. Before you decide how to proceed, understanding the advantages and disadvantages of mediation can help you choose the best option for your divorce.

What Is Divorce Mediation?

During divorce mediation, the two spouses discuss their unresolved issues in front of a mediator. A mediator is a third party who will aid divorcing spouses in conflict resolution. His or her job is to be a neutral advisor during the mediation process, helping to clarify misunderstandings and guiding the spouses toward making decisions. The mediator does not represent either spouse and therefore cannot provide either one with direct legal advice, but it is helpful to have a mediator who understands all of the legal complexities of the divorce process, including the allocation of parental responsibilities (child custody), parenting time (visitation), and the division of assets.

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Divorce mediation offers several potential benefits, including:

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b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_34797886_tn.jpgOver the course of a marriage, couples can accumulate a large amount of marital assets and debts, including homes, cars, savings accounts, businesses, investments, mortgages, and more. If you decide to get a divorce, the prospect of dividing property between you and your spouse may be one of the most daunting parts of the process. However, in many cases, division of property does not have to be an ugly fight. If you and your spouse are willing to communicate and cooperate, you may be able to reach an agreement that works for both of you through divorce mediation.

What Is Divorce Mediation?

Mediation allows divorcing couples to make collaborative decisions about the terms of their divorce agreement, including not only property division, but also child support, spousal support, and parenting time and responsibilities. A neutral, third-party mediator guides the discussion to promote constructive conversations and efficient resolutions, but you and your spouse maintain control over the outcome. Mediation may only be possible if you and your spouse are both interested in cooperative solutions, but when that is the case, mediation can save you the time, money, stress, and lack of privacy that you would face in a trial.

Benefits of Mediation for Division of Assets

When it comes to the distribution of property, mediation makes it possible for you and your spouse to decide upon the assets that are most important to each of you, instead of being bound by the rulings of a judge. For example, if one of you wants to keep your marital home, you may be able to negotiate for one of you to purchase the other’s share of the property. If there are other possessions that each of you holds dear, you can ensure that you maintain those possessions after your divorce. If you have significant assets in retirement accounts, you can discuss a plan to distribute them without facing early withdrawal penalties or excessive taxes. If there is a disparity in income or earning potential between you and your spouse, you can negotiate for spousal support payments to allow for a more equitable distribution.

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Posted on in Divorce Mediation

DuPage County Divorce Mediation LawyersDivorce mediation is quickly gaining popularity and is replacing divorce litigation as the “go-to” method of divorce for many couples. Why? No one wants to spend more time with their soon-to-be-ex-spouse than necessary, right?

Increasingly, that is not the case. Mediation allows divorcing couples to work together to create solutions that work best for their unique circumstances. The decisions are more personalized than those produced by a judge. Mediation also prepares couples for the collaboration needed for successful co-parenting.

Let us take a look at some of the leading benefits of choosing divorce mediation:

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Wheaton divorce mediation lawyerFor those exploring the options of divorce, mediation is often new and unexplored territory. Most people envision divorce as consisting of ugly courtroom battles between two feuding spouses, with attorneys interjecting “Objection!” whenever appropriate. While some situations certainly escalate to meet this expectation, a significant portion of the population is opting for the less stressful, less costly, and frequently more beneficial alternative known as mediation. During divorce mediation, the two parties work to reach an agreement with the assistance of a knowledgeable and neutral third party.

An Option Between DIY and Litigation

Some people refer to mediation as “divorcing without attorneys.” This is partially correct, since the two parties reach an agreement together in private, rather than leaving the future up to an impartial judge in a public courtroom. However, rather than you and your spouse sitting at a computer attempting to navigate the murky waters of divorce papers, a neutral third party is present to guide the conversation. Although it is possible to use a non-attorney mediator, a lawyer has the legal training and experience necessary to provide the sound legal advice essential to create a lasting and beneficial agreement.

Benefits of Mediation

Although mediation is not a viable option for every situation, many who choose this approach discover a more friendly, less emotionally difficult experience than the traditional alternative. Mediation is a divorce on your terms, rather than a seemingly random decision made by a judge who only knows a limited amount about you and your family.

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Posted on in Divorce Mediation

mediation, Wheaton divorce attorneyWhen you think about the legal process of divorce, do you picture a wood-trimmed courtroom with a spouse on either side and judge in the center to facilitate the standoff? This mental picture may not be exactly accurate, but it would probably be similar to the image of a divorce that most people would conjure.

What you might not know, however, is that the overwhelming majority of all civil cases—which include divorces—are not decided by a judge or jury in a courtroom. Rather, they are resolved through negotiations between the parties, and the judge’s primary role is to approve the agreement the parties have reached. One of the most common ways in which a divorcing couple reaches an agreement is through mediation. Divorce mediation offers several benefits compared to a litigated divorce, including time and money savings, scheduling flexibility, and a higher level of participation from both spouses. There is also the often-forgotten advantage of substantially increased privacy and personal security.

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