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Preparing for mediation: The pros and cons

On Behalf of | Jan 24, 2022 | Family Law

One of the options couples in California can have to resolve their divorce issues is mediation. When they choose it, they attempt to resolve their issues, such as division of property, child custody, and financial support, out of the courtroom by working with a neutral third party. The process can have both pros and cons so it is important to walk into the mediation sessions well-prepared.

How to prepare for mediation?

Preparing for mediation means learning about your rights and the laws regarding each of the issues. As part of the preparation, you should also have a clear focus about what you want to get out of the mediation and what you need after your divorce. Creating a budget to understand what your financial situation will be after the end of the marriage will help you with this. Finally, if you are a parent, you should also prepare to work with your ex-spouse to reach an agreement that keeps the focus on the best interests of the children.

The pros of mediation

Being prepared means that you might get to enjoy the benefits mediation provides. These include:

  • More control over your process, as the major decisions are being made by the two of you and not a judge
  • Confidentiality of your information, as all your words are not being recorded and any notes taken by the mediator are destroyed once the process is over
  • The possibility of a fair process moderated by a neutral mediator
  • A faster and more cost-effective process

The cons of mediation

As with any other process, mediation can have some disadvantages. These include having to negotiate with a spouse who might have been manipulative or abusive without having to face the consequences for their actions and who might be willing to be dishonest by hiding assets. In such cases, you might also feel intimidated and overwhelmed during the process.