To settle in a divorce, you can do so through mediation, arbitration or through a trial. Despite being a civil route, mediation has a bad reputation, according to the Huffington Post. 

Arbitration and mediation are not the same things 

In arbitration, the arbitrator can make decisions for you. In mediation, the mediator does not have authority. Arbitrators are like judges and in some cases will enter you into a binding agreement. This never happens in mediation. The mediator does not have the same authority as an arbitrator. 

Mediation does not encourage arguments 

In mediation, you do not have to be in the same room as your soon-to-be former spouse. You can be in one office, while your spouse is in the other. The mediator is the middleman, so to speak. He or she travels between the two rooms and discusses both sides, respectively. The mediator’s role is to help the two of you move towards a mutual decision. There is no room for arguments because you do not have to speak directly to your spouse. 

In a trial setting, you must argue your case. You and your ex stand before a judge and jury. Also, there may be witnesses called to discuss your relationship. 

Failed mediation does not necessarily result in a trial 

Sometimes mediation does not work for couples. If it does not work for you, do not mistake it for a lack of progress. There is still value in the process and if you are like many couples, you may settle before you go to trial but after you finish the mediation process.