Do you really want to spend your children’s education money, your vacation money, and the full value of your home on your divorce? Do you want to indefinitely prolong the pain, fear, anger, and disruption of separation and divorce? Do you want to be engaged in stressful combat over your children and money for years to come? Consider mediation as a lower-cost, less stressful, more efficient alternative to litigation.
You owe it to yourself, your children, and your future to learn more about mediation. You will be happier, and your children will thank you!
Divorce by mediation: the wiser, recommended path.
Divorce mediation is a voluntary process in which an unbiased, impartial mediator helps couples negotiate with each other to create their own mutually acceptable agreement.
- A mediator is professionally trained and experienced in conflict resolution and knows how to keep the couple on track, minimize conflict, find common ground, and advance mutual interests.
- Divorce mediation is constructive and future-focused, completely devoid of past blame, judgments, and criticisms; it focuses on mutually acceptable solutions and transitioning the family structure.
- Mediation is balanced and conducted so that there should be no losers – one spouse should not win at the expense of the other!
We will take care of “all the details,” including support, asset division, and parenting.
- We will help you determine what it costs to live apart, budgets, tax implications, and the amount and duration of support.
* We will ensure that both spouses fully grasp their finances and have the tools and resources to understand and work within their budgets moving forward. This is especially important where one spouse has made the financial decisions, and the other has less financial expertise.
- We will help you identify all of your marital assets, figure out their value, and help you to divide them fairly.
- We will help you make all the future parenting decisions.
- We will equip you with ways to avoid future problems.
- As attorney mediators, we will draft and file your legal divorce documents.
* We will apprise you of the generic, often arcane rules, formulas, and calculations used by the courts in litigation to determine support, maintenance, custody, visitation, asset division, pensions, insurance, and the like, so that you are fully informed and can best decide where and how to choose options better suited for your situation.
* We will draft the Separation Agreement, which memorializes your negotiated agreement with your spouse and becomes a binding legal contract.
* If you wish to have your own, personal, independent attorney, we have “Review Attorneys,” who review the separation agreement with only you in mind to ensure its fairness, or you can use your own review attorney.
* We will draft your divorce paperwork and file it in court together with your Separation Agreement.
- We are knowledgeable and experienced in the religious laws surrounding divorce and will work with clergy/Rabbis, as well as assist in obtaining the Get.
- During mediation, other professional services are sometimes needed. We maintain a wide network of consulting specialists, including accountants, financial planners, estate planners, pension and insurance experts, career counselors, therapists, and psychologists.
Key benefits of divorce by mediation:
- Mediation is non-adversarial. The nature of the legal system requires the spouses to be adversaries. Many people in dispute are not adversaries and don’t want to be. Rather, they understand that problem-solving is more constructive. These people choose mediation, where areas of conflict are addressed productively and both parties must agree on solutions, or there is no agreement.
Mediation is not just for couples that already know how to cooperate. Mediators show spouses how to work together productively in spite of their anger, pain, frustration, and fears.
- Mediation is private. Interpersonal disputes are best solved privately, and most people prefer to settle their family matters within the confines of the family. During litigation, the intimate, often embarrassing details of spouses and their children’s lives are “aired out” in front of many strangers for months and even years. Choosing mediation limits such outside exposure.
- Mediation gives you control. Rather than submit to judges, court personnel, the unpredictability of the judicial system, opposing counsel and forensic experts, whose opinions and decisions can be unfavorable and force you into an undesirable lifelong predicament, mediation gives you control over decisions that affect your life.
- Mediation is less expensive. The cost of mediation, including the cost of Review Attorneys, is far less than the cost of litigation. Fees are moderate and on an hourly basis. We charge no retainers. You pay only for the actual time you use. We ask that you share in the fees in a way that is appropriate to your situation, remembering that the mediator is working for both of you.
* The modest and easily quantifiable cost of mediation is in stark contrast to the often exorbitant and near bankrupting costs of litigation that have no ceiling (divorce attorneys commonly file liens against the couple’s home to recoup legal fees). In litigation, you must pay a retainer and the costs of process servers, pleadings, motions, hearings, depositions, telephone conversations with your attorney, time your attorney spends talking to opposing counsel and just waiting in court (often up to 3-4 hours, as the courts are heavily congested and backlogged), etc. Mediation involves none of the needless waiting, corresponding, and motion practice, and as such, its cost is significantly lower and contained.
- Mediation is faster. Sessions are usually scheduled a week or two apart. While it can take as little as 2 hours, an agreement is generally reached in 6-12 hours. Mediation takes less time, so you can move ahead with your life.
- Mediation is better for your children. Most other forms of divorce negotiations forget the best interests of the children. In mediation, it is always paramount. In mediation, children are not harmed by a long, expensive, hateful court battle.
* Mediation encourages discussions which recognize that you are both parents of your children and will continue to be parents after you have ended your spouse relationship.
Mediation is also for couples who do not have children or whose children are grown.
Feel free to contact us anytime by using any of the following methods:
Copyright © 2016, The Law and Mediation Offices of Cheryl Stein
This is considered Attorney Advertising by some Bar Associations.
Prior results do not imply future similar results. Communication does not imply Attorney-Client relationship.