January 09, 2014 /24-7PressRelease/
-- Florida has one of the country's highest divorce rates; the U.S. Census reported nearly 80,000 divorces in our state in 2009 alone. With such a high number, it's understandable that the divorce process can be time-consuming and frustrating for many people who just want their divorces to get through the court system and to move on with their lives. There may be many couples in Florida who are good candidates for a mediated divorce, which is usually over with faster and even costs up to 60 percent less than a litigated divorce.
The issues that are common in nearly every divorce, such as child support, custody, property division
and alimony, can be handled by a trained mediator or a divorce attorney with experience in mediation. According to the American Bar Association, mediation involves a neutral third party - the mediator - in conducting a mutually respectful conversation between the divorcing parties to come to an agreement they both can live with. When approached with cooperation and an open mind, mediation can be extremely beneficial for everyone involved.
Preparing for a mediated divorce
Couples who are planning mediation should gather together the necessary divorce paperwork, such as bank records, retirement plans, income information and proof of assets and expenses. It will help for each person to come prepared with a plan as to how they wish to split child custody
and property division. Although these factors may change during the mediation process, it helps to have a starting plan.
Although each spouse can be in the room together during mediation, the mediator may find it easier to speak with them separately if needed, to keep tension at a minimum. If divorcing couples are able to treat each other with respect and cooperate during the process, it can be over with quickly. Mediation may also take several sessions in order to come to an agreeable resolution for all parties. According to The Examiner, a successful mediation helps to individually tailor a divorce, rather than rely on a judge to make decisions.
When mediation may not be possible
There are some factors that may make a mediated divorce difficult. If, according to Hamline University, the following factors are a problem, a litigated divorce may be the best option:
- If physical, sexual, verbal or emotional abuse occurred during the marriage.
- If alcohol or drugs are a problem.
- When one spouse doesn't want the conflict to end, or wants to hurt the other person emotionally.
- When one or both spouses are too depressed to make sound decisions.
- If one spouse doesn't feel safe during the mediation sessions.
If at any time one or both spouses feel like they are unable to trust the other person or themselves to be honest or fair in mediation, undertaking a more traditional divorce route may be the better choice.
Contacting an attorney
With either choice, it will help to contact an experienced divorce attorney. Having an attorney present during mediation can be helpful, to suggest changes or review documents before anything is signed.
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