Sometimes, parties to a divorce opt for mediation instead of going to court, which can be lengthy and costly. Mediation is an informal process that aims to establish a satisfactory agreement between ex-partners, with or without a legal representative. But even if parties already have assistance from their attorneys, it is good for them to understand how the mediation process works so they know what to expect and can prepare beforehand.
Possible issues to cover
Knowing what issues the mediation will cover can help parties protect their rights. For instance, when covering the division of assets, parties need to familiarize themselves with all the properties to ensure that they will be part of the division. Other topics can include custody, parenting plan, child support, alimony and other discussions that may be unique to the parties involved.
Parties who know what to expect can prepare how they will communicate their terms respectfully but effectively. If one is unaware of the topics or how the process will go, it might put one at a disadvantage.
What to prepare
Having a checklist of what one can prepare before the mediation is beneficial. The following might come in handy when proving a fact or a point during the discussion:
- Notes on topics so one’s arguments are not simply memory-reliant
- Court documents
- List of all assets, properties and debts
- Financial statements
These, along with other discovery information, can help parties effectively negotiate and get the best result from the discussions.
Mediation as a tool
Mediation is a powerful tool for ex-partners to resolve past conflicts and establish agreements moving forward without the court’s intervention. If both parties come prepared before the negotiation, the discussion can run smoothly and might help achieve a satisfactory agreement between them.