In family law cases, clients often wonder what is mediation and if they should do it. Mediation is not binding on you, and typically a neutral mediator will sit down with both parties in an attempt to reach an agreement. When you “mediate” you are bringing out issues you would like to resolve. Both parties typically have issues that need to be worked out, things like, how old should our daughter be before we allow her a cell phone? Or who is going to keep the house? Should we sell it or will one of you refinance it?

Mediation is always a good idea, especially in family law cases. Studies show that mediated agreements are ones that both parties will generally follow since they have agreed to the terms. Unlike a trial or hearing before the court, you have a lot of control over the outcome of your case when you mediate it.

When Is Mediation Not a Good Idea?

I once represented a man who came back after only two hours with a mediated agreement. I reviewed the agreement and was wondering what went wrong and how my client could agree to take only 20% of the marital estate? I called the mediator and was told that he agreed to it, so they wrapped up the session and wrote up the agreement. I told the mediator that there would be no agreement, and we would see the other side in court. If a client will simply agree to everything the other side says, then that is not mediation.

7 Things You Need to Know About Mediation

1. Mediation Will Save You Money

2. Be Ready and Willing to Compromise

3. Both Parties Need to Be Emotionally Ready

4. Mediation is a Good Option During the Pandemic

5. Don’t Sign Anything Until Your Lawyer Has Reviewed and Approved It

6. Children May Be Involved in Mediation

7. Make Sure You Pick a Family Law Mediator

Is Mediation Right for Your Family Law Case?


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