Getting a divorce means making decisions that will affect you and your family for the rest of your lives, and it is safe to say that it should not be taken lightly. Many people think that you only have one option when it comes to getting a divorce: litigation in court. However, just as there is more than one way of getting married, there is more than one way of getting divorced. Another increasingly popular method of dissolving marriages is mediation. Examining the pros and cons of each type of divorce can help you decide which would be better for you.
The Basics of Divorce Litigation
Many people consider litigation to be the traditional divorce method. In a litigated divorce, both spouses are represented by their own lawyers who provide legal advice and represent their client’s interests in court, with the goal of convincing the judge to issue a final decision in their client’s favor.
Litigated divorces can often be long and stressful. When your divorce case goes to court, it tends to increase the amount of time it takes to reach a decision, because you are relying on the court’s availability and timeline. Litigated divorces can also become messy and combative, which can be hard on the whole family, especially the children.
In addition, when your case goes to court, you no longer have much say in the decisions that are made. The judge assigned to your case will make determinations according to their interpretation of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act, and you may feel that their decisions are not in the best interests of you and your family. However, divorce litigation is sometimes necessary when it is impossible to reach an agreement with your spouse, or in the case of difficult factors like domestic violence or child endangerment.
Understanding Divorce Mediation
In a mediated divorce, a neutral, third-party mediator helps the couple come to an agreement on all aspects of the divorce, including property division, spousal maintenance, child support, and parental responsibilities. The mediator is not able to advocate for either spouse, but must bring issues to the couple’s attention that need to be addressed, allowing them to make the final decisions. The mediator does not necessarily have to be a lawyer, but a mediator who is an attorney can help couples understand the legal issues that must be resolved.
Because mediation requires both spouses to be open to negotiation and civil toward each other, it is an option that can be favorable for couples with children. Divorce is a stressful time, and mediation can help the divorce go a bit more smoothly, ultimately lessening the impact of conflict on children.
Because of the nature of mediation, there is also a greater probability of each spouse following through with the terms of their divorce agreement. The collaborative nature of mediation increases the ability of each spouse to have control over the outcome, meaning they will have both taken part in the decision-making process and are more likely to be satisfied with the agreements that they reach.
Contact a Certified Divorce Mediator in DuPage County
The first step in initiating the divorce process is consulting with a skilled Wheaton divorce attorney. When you work with Andrew Cores Family Law Group, you have the option of obtaining a divorce through a variety of different methods. Our team includes experienced divorce attorneys and certified mediators who can help you reach a positive outcome in your divorce through whichever method you choose. To set up a free consultation, contact our office at 630-871-1002.