Dissolving a marriage has to be done through a legal process, but it doesn’t have to be the combative way that many have known divorce to be. Today, couples are seeking a mediation process which requires less tumultuous situations and tends to be more focused on the priorities after a split. Mediation is typically guided by third-party, which helps spouses feel better about the stressful situation. In this article, we are going to discuss the mediation process and some of the benefits that come with choosing this option to end a union.
The Mediation Process
When two people seek a mediation alternative to divorce, they will typically go through a version of this process. For amicable separations, this process may only take one session. If there are some disputes, additional mediation sessions may be needed.
Introductory Statements – Both parties and the mediator will gather in a room and give statements (if they choose) about the dissolution of the marriage and the overall goals for mediation.
Main Problems Revealed or Discussed – The mediator will then guide both parties to discuss the main issues of the marriage and the dissolving of the union. These statements, and the discussions that follow, will help the mediator understand where the problems exist and create compromises for both parties to consider. This part of mediation is an information gathering pursuit for the mediator so they can come up with appropriate solutions that both parties will be satisfied with.
Presentation of Potential Solutions and Negotiations – After the mediator has a good grasp on what both parties are seeking, they can start offering up different solutions and compromises. Each party can then negotiate their points, so they feel they’re getting treated fairly in the process.
Reaching an Agreement – Once an agreement is reached, a mediator will draw up the contract for both parties to sign. A final hearing can then be requested to put the agreement on the record and get it approved by the Court.
The Benefits of Meditation
Mediation is a mandatory part of the family court process in South Carolina for any contested case. It can be difficult, especially if there has been significant mistrust or carelessness in the marriage. However, for those who are splitting on a more amicable level, mediation has many benefits.
More Financially Beneficial – Divorces can rack up thousands of dollars in legal fees, which only hurts the family as a whole, not to mention children if they are involved. In fact, the average cost to end a marriage in America is thousands of dollars, that could be going into the raising of the couple’s children.
More Private – Divorces done in the traditional court system are public record and can open each party up to scrutiny and wandering eyes. Mediation is a more private way to handle a very personal situation.
Better for the Kids – Mediators tend to keep spouses focused on the children, which can sometimes be lost in traditional litigation. This creates tension among spouses that can sometimes be seen and heard, or intuitively felt by the children.
Every mediation is different and is customized according to each family. Spouses who decide to use a mediator are more likely to end up with an agreement they are more comfortable with and serves the main priorities of all parties. While not an option for everyone, mediation is an excellent choice when couples decide to mutually part ways.