December 21, 2015

Can Mediation Help You Settle Your Divorce?


Divorces can be difficult cases to resolve because the issues are deeply personal and the stakes are so high. However, most people will be happier with a solution they have a role in creating than a solution imposed by a court order. Mediation can help spouses resolve their differences and create a solution that works for everyone.

How Mediation Works

Mediation is a voluntary process where both sides agree to have a neutral third party help them come to an agreement to settle the issues in the divorce. While mediators are not required to be lawyers, the most effective mediators are lawyers and retired judges.

Most mediators will meet with both sides and have each side in a separate room with his or her lawyer during the mediation The mediator then goes back and forth between the two sides trying to find common ground. Often times mediators can help the two sides see weaknesses in their cases and areas where they already have common ground.

The mediator has no power to force an agreement. The two sides can always decline to settle and to continue on the path towards litigation. If the two sides do come to an agreement the final arrangements will still have to be approved by a judge, especially if children are involved. But, a judge almost never tosses out an agreement made in mediation.

A mediation does not have to resolve every single issue to be a success. Sometimes just getting the two sides to settle a single issue makes mediation worth it.

When Mediation Does Not Work

Mediation works well to solve many different kinds of disputes. But, in some instances mediation may not help at all, and may even make a case even more difficult to settle.

If there have been issues of domestic violence or abuse, mediation is not usually recommended.  If the parties are unwilling to settle, or one side has a history of being manipulative and controlling, mediation is unlikely to resolve any issues.

Mediation is a tool that skillful lawyers can use to help their clients get the resolution to the divorce that is in their client’s best interest. But, it is not a good fit for every case.

If you are facing a divorce or other family law matter, speak with an experienced DuPage County family law attorney. Call the firm of Mulyk Laho Law, LLC today at 630-852-1100 to setup a consultation. Make sure you understand the best way to protect your right and your family.