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Attorneys Vic Hill and Brad MacDonald

Why mediation may not be right for you

In recent years, family law professionals have touted mediation as the solution to the increasingly backlogged family court systems in Ohio and around the country. Many couples have decided to use mediation as a more cost-effective, less combative way to conclude their marriage.

There are many benefits to mediation in addition to those mentioned above. Most importantly, it allows couples to work out a divorce agreement that is specifically tailored to their family and financial situation. This allows couples to determine their family’s future, instead of leaving it those key decisions up to a family court judge.

However, mediation might not be for everyone, and this is why.

First, couples who want to work together in mediation must be able to do just that. They certainly don’t need to be in agreement on all matters and issues, but they must be able to negotiate amicably and compromise until they reach a solution. The trained mediator will be able to help guide couples away from any negotiation hazards or common pitfalls, but couples must have the ability and willingness to remain calm and reasonable during the mediation process.

Second, couples must have some issues to resolve. This seems like a no-brainer, but many people have an incorrect concept of mediation as a process for people who already have their divorce issues completely worked out. If that is the case, couples should simply submit their divorce settlement agreement for approval by a judge.

But for Atlanta couples who need to work out their child custody, child support, or property settlement agreement, mediation may be the right choice.

Source: The Huffington Post, “What Most People Don’t Know About Divorce Mediation,” J. Richard Kulerski and Kari Cornelison, Jan. 24, 2012