There is no doubt that any type of legal matter involving your family can be stressful and emotional. There is a lot at stake in family law cases, including your relationship with your children, finances, and more. Adverse parties might have a lot to disagree on, though it is usually preferable to reach their own agreement outside of court instead of putting the rulings in the hands of a judge. One way that many spouses or parents accomplish this is through mediation. If you would like to learn about your options in your family law case, contact a family mediation lawyer at SAM LAW OFFICE, LLC.
Mediation is an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) method that aims to prevent litigation in cases when possible. You and the other party will participate in mediation sessions, during which you will sit down with a third-party mediator in a law firm conference room or another similar space. Though the mediator might be an attorney, they are not representing either party and are expected to remain neutral regarding the parties’ interests. Often the parties have their own attorneys and still participate in mediation with their attorneys.
The mediator’s job is to listen to each position of the parties and help to facilitate a conversation that leads to compromise. If the parties can reach a middle ground and agree to certain terms to settle the legal matter, they can sign a mediation agreement, which is a legally binding contract.
If two parties cannot agree in a divorce or child custody case, they might think they are headed into court. However, going to court should only be a last resort in most situations. Once you litigate a matter, the judge will rule on the resolution, and you will have no control over that ruling. If you reach a settlement in mediation, you and the other party both have the power to agree to the terms and the control to negotiate further if you want.
Aside from avoiding the uncertainty of litigation, other benefits of mediation can include:
Resolving matters on your terms can save you resources and, ultimately, improve your case’s outcome.
It is a misconception that you have to agree on issues to enter mediation. In fact, mediation is for parties who cannot agree on one or more aspects of their case. In family law, mediation can help resolve one or more of the following:
If you have a sticking point in your case, mediation can work as long as you and the other party can communicate. If the other party is abusive or irrational, mediation might not be successful, and you might want to move into litigation.
It is critical to have the counsel of your own attorney during the mediation process. If you would like to learn more about family law mediation, contact the law firm of SAM LAW OFFICE, LLC, for a consultation.
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