If your marriage is nearing its end, but the relationship between you and your soon-to-be-ex-spouse is relatively amicable and not beyond repair, you may be considering undergoing mediation as opposed to embarking on a more traditional divorce. Instead of each party in the marriage retaining his or her own lawyer to fight on his or her behalf, mediation involves having both parties meet with an impartial third party to hash out details relating to the divorce.
While mediation can be a great way to demonstrate that you and your former partner are willing to work together for the betterment of the family unit, it also offers several key benefits. Arguably, the two most significant benefits of undergoing mediation when ending your marriage are:
The cost-effective nature of the process
When compared with a traditional, courtroom divorce, mediation is generally much cheaper. Why? If you and your partner opt for regular litigation, you must both typically hire attorneys at your own expense. Additionally, you have to worry about court fees and the like, all of which you can largely avoid simply by opting for mediation. According to some estimates, mediation is often between 40 and 60 percent less expensive than divorce litigation.
Its positive effects on children
Watching their parents' marriage end is typically tough on all children, but you and your former partner may be able to soften the blow by taking part in mediation, rather than a litigated courtroom divorce. For starters, agreeing to mediation shows your children that the two of you plan to maintain a united front, post-divorce, which can get your co-parenting relationship off to a healthy and positive start. Additionally, mediation tends to be far less stressful and acrimonious than traditional divorce, making for an easier home life for all throughout the process.
While saving money and making things easier on your children are solid arguments for engaging in mediation, know that taking part in the process may also give you more control over matters such as child custody or visitation arrangements.