For many people in New Jersey, divorce is often an emotional and overwhelming process. In addition to separating marital property, couples must negotiate child custody and alimony as well.
While some people opt to have a court appointed judge have the final say in the terms of their divorce settlement, there are other options. Mediation offers couples advantages over traditional courtroom divorce depending on the circumstances surrounding the case.
What is divorce mediation?
Rather than present the case in front of a judge, mediation takes place in a non-confrontational environment in the presence of a third-party mediator. The mediator is there to answer questions and guide the session to ensure all topics are covered. If couples want personal legal care, however, they may choose to have their attorneys present. During the mediation session, the couple creates a settlement that benefits everyone involved.
What are the advantages of mediation?
According to the American Bar Association, there are several benefits to opting for mediation, including the following:
- Cheap, as it minimizes couples’ court costs and other legal fees
- Quick, as it allows couples to schedule their own mediation appointments without having to wait for lengthy court dates
- Private, since mediation notes are not a matter of public record like court records
- Personal, as mediation allows couples to determine the terms that work best for their unique situation
Mediation tends to minimize hostility and improve relationships, especially for people, such as parents and business partners, who must continue a relationship after divorce. Although mediation is not ideal for every situation, it continues to help many couples who seek an alternative to traditional divorce.