Uncontested Divorce and Divorce Mediation
In order to understand divorce mediation, first we need to understand uncontested divorce. To get an uncontested divorce, you and your spouse must be in complete agreement on every issue impacted by your divorce. Depending on what source you look at, between 80% and 95% of divorces in the United States are uncontested. Now, I know what you’re thinking — how on Earth do around 90% of divorcing couples get to a point where they are in complete agreement regarding their divorce? Well, divorce mediation is a big part of the answer to that question.
Getting Started With Divorce Mediation
The first step is the selection of a mediator. This can be a bit tricky, as there aren’t any professional licenses or certifications for mediators. Anyone can call themselves a divorce mediator. For best results, you’ll want to be selective about who you choose. A mediator should have an in depth knowledge of divorce laws in your jurisdiction. They can be a lawyer, but people other than lawyers can be mediators too. If they are a lawyer, they cannot have a client relationship with either spouse. Your lawyer can’t do it, and neither can your spouse’s — that would be a conflict of interest. Mediators do not offer legal advice to either party, but an in depth knowledge of the law will help them do their job. The most important thing a mediator can have is a wealth of experience in helping people come together to resolve their issues.
Once you’ve selected a mediator, it’s time to set your first meeting. At the first meeting you will set the agenda for divorce mediation, establish a rapport with your mediator, and resolve temporary issues so that the divorce can continue. Temporary issues include who will remain in the house, who will take care of the kids, and what kind of visitation schedule each parent will have. If one spouse needs temporary spousal support during the proceedings, that can also be negotiated at this meeting.
Check back soon for Divorce Mediation — Part 2