There's a saying--or maybe it was a bumper sticker--that read, "He who dies with the most toys wins." Clearly, it was meant to be funny, but it was also sarcastic and a reminder that in the end, the pursuit of winning doesn't change how we all end up. Divorce is like that too. Divorce isn't about winning.
The ugly side of divorce litigation
Courtroom battles between spouses can be long and bitter as the former spouses fight for assets and children. It may feel like a competition as you litigate your divorce, but there won't be any winners. Divorce litigation can be:
- Time consuming: Litigation is NOT the quick way out.
- Expensive: With legal fees, time is money.
- Anger inducing: In a courtroom fight, tempers can flare.
- Unproductive: After a great deal of time, money and emotional hurt, it may become apparent that litigation isn't the answer.
- Traumatic: Think about the impact on your children of a drawn-out fight between their parents.
When all is said and done, despite the rulings and outcomes, no one really wins--especially the children.
What if there was a better way?
There is a better way. A way that resolves problems, increases communication and minimizes the adverse consequences for children. A way for spouses and parents to avoid a bitter courtroom fight and instead, negotiate outside of court to reach a divorce agreement--or child custody agreement--that is optimal for everyone involved. Welcome to divorce mediation.
What is divorce mediation?
In mediation, parties meet with an independent mediator who is trained to facilitate the divorce process, keep the communication flowing and offer ideas to help the parties arrive at an agreement that both can live with. The beauty of the process is that both parties keep control of the decision making--rather than a judge.
The benefits are many, but it's important to note that the benefits of mediation can extend beyond the spouses to friends and family as well. Some of the benefits include:
- Reduces the emotional toll: Mediation is less a legal competition and more about cooperation.
- Reduces the expense: The legal fees are often greatly decreased.
- Shortens the divorce process: When spouses agree to meet with a mediator, the process can shorten from months to just a few sessions.
- Improves communication: Utilizing a solution that ensures good communication is ideal as most marriages dissolve from communication issues.
The process of divorce can be emotionally charged, as well as expensive, stressful and complicated, but using mediation will help keep the divorce out of the courtroom and can benefit everyone involved. Remember, your family matters more than winning.