What is Mediation?

Posted On May 2nd, 2016 by Michael Dunham

[Ed: Originally published on Facebook.]

“The judge has ordered us to attend mediation before we go to trial.”

What could this judge be thinking? If we could agree on everything, we wouldn’t be getting a divorce, right? If I could talk through all this stuff with my spouse, why would I even need a lawyer?

Mediation works in probably 80-90% of cases. That’s a staggering figure, but it makes sense when you consider the time, expense, and emotional energy that are being spent on your divorce case.

Think of mediation as an “assisted settlement negotiation”. You and your spouse will likely not be in the same room at all during this process; rather, the mediator will shuttle back and forth to keep the discussion moving. A good mediator is also creative, able to think of possible solutions that neither you nor your spouse would ever have come up with on your own. And always remember, you can only settle if YOU want to; neither the mediator nor anyone else can force you to settle.

Mediation can be a key part of your process, and can actually get you “across the finish line”. Take advantage of the opportunity.