Divorce Mediation Benefits in Massachusetts
Serving Boston, Plymouth and the South Coast of Massachusetts – Free Consultations
Mediation is an often used “alternative dispute resolution” tool for many different types of legal cases where parties are not initially in agreement and are ready to litigate in court. Mediation is used in civil cases like product liability, negligence, breach of contract, and so on. The process of mediation involves the parties and their attorneys coming together to try and resolve their disputes without court involvement.
Mediation is one of increasingly popular and effective ways to resolve divorce cases without having to litigate in court, although the overall number of couples that choose to mediate their cases is still relatively low. Due to the many benefits of divorce mediation, the number of couples that choose the mediation path really should be much greater.
There are few cons and a huge number of benefits to divorce mediation. The only observable con to mediation includes the cost because it will be necessary to hire a professional mediator (in divorce cases you need to hire a family law expert with mediation experience). However, the cost is nearly always far less than the overall cost of litigating a divorce case.
Some of the many benefits of divorce mediation include the following:
Divorce mediation costs less: Divorce mediation is estimated to cost between two and ten times less than litigation. While it may seem daunting when a divorce mediator requests a retainer up front, the initial investment will nearly always be well worth it. Because the overall cost of mediation costs less than divorce litigation, the initial retainer usually will cover most of the cost to resolve the entire case. When parties litigate, the case can drag on and cost many thousands of dollars more than expected.
Divorce mediation is quicker: Unlike litigation, where parties have to wait for court dates and for judges to make decisions about their case, mediated cases are done on your terms. Parties can reach immediate agreements and streamline the divorce process.
Divorce mediation saves heartache: Divorce cases are emotionally challenging and draining. When mediation is employed, parties are actively involved in the cooperative approach and have something to feel good about, unlike when a family court judge in Massachusetts makes a decision for the parties and neither party ends of satisfied.
Divorce mediators can work with other attorneys: If you are currently going through a divorce case and attorneys are involved, there is no harm in considering divorce mediation to try and get in the middle of all the parties and attorneys to bring reason and an objective approach. Having a neutral opinion from a divorce expert can go a long way to help resolve a divorce case.
Divorce mediation is better for children: Children need two parents that get along and communicate with each other to the extent they look after the child’s best interests. Arguing in court, even outside of the child’s presence, stimulates anger and ill-will between parents and children are certainly susceptible to recognizing when their parents are at odds. Mediating child custody disputes is priceless for a child’s well being.
Divorce mediation balances and equalizes the power of each party: Effective divorce mediators understand the personal dynamics involved in a divorce. As divorce litigators, we have been in the toughest battles in court and have dealt with every personality imaginable. Having a forthright mediator tell each party what is likely to happen in their case often helps neutralize the parties. Often, “aggressive” spouses learn the benefits of cooperation involved in divorce mediation that will ultimately help them achieve a better outcome outside of court than they would have gotten by litigating using their aggressive tactics.
Divorce mediation is ideal for spouses that don’t get along: Even if you don’t get along with your spouse, you can still participate in mediation. Often, we separate parties and meet with each individually outside the presence of the other spouse. We can even conduct online mediation sessions using webcam technology so that parties don’t even have to be in the same city as the other.
Mediation is ideal for complex cases: Mediation is perfect for divorce cases that involve complex issues of asset division, child custody, and support. In fact, the more complex a case is the more important mediation becomes. When parties are self-employed and have income that is difficult to calculate for support, for example, having an expert litigator and mediator will help resolve disputes as to how the income would ultimately be decided by the court. When high-value assets and business interests need to be divided and assigned to the parties, mediation is perfect to help fashion an “outside the box” result.
Mediation agreements can be fashioned by the parties: Unlike litigation in divorce, where a judge is bound to follow the rule of law and has limitations to what they can and cannot order, parties to a divorce mediation are generally free to come up with their own agreements that may be contrary to the requirements of the law. Our divorce and custody mediation experts often help parties come up with unique resolutions for their case that would never have been possible through a court battle.
For more information about mediation, click here.