When a couple divorces, they must address several difficult and complicated issues. They must reach an agreement about how to split up their assets and debt, what to do with the marital home, how child custody issues will be managed, whether a spouse will receive spousal maintenance, and more. If the spouses are unable to reach an agreement, their case may go to trial. Most divorcing spouses want to avoid divorce litigation if possible. Mediation is an alternative resolution method that may help a couple reach an agreement about the terms of their divorce; however, mediation is not right in every case.
Mediation May Not Suffice When There are Complex Legal and Financial Issues
Many couples who are still on relatively good terms wish to resolve divorce issues through family law mediation so that they can avoid a contentious court battle. However, mediators are not required to have legal training or a law degree. They are not there to give you legal advice or representation but instead to facilitate productive discussions and negotiations about the divorce issues. Mediation alone may be insufficient when a couple has a high net worth, owns complex investments, owns a business, or has other unusual financial or legal situations.
If you wish to keep your divorce as amicable as possible but you still want the peace of mind that comes from working with an experienced attorney, you may want to consider collaborative law. In a collaborative divorce, each spouse retains their own attorney but the attorneys and spouses work together instead of against each other. The participants agree to the free exchange of information and to negotiate in good faith. Collaborative divorce also allows you to work with other professionals such as an accountant, financial planner, child specialist, or divorce coach.
Mediation Is Inappropriate if There Is Abuse or a Major Disparity in Power
Mediation requires both spouses to be willing and able to compromise and negotiate honestly. If there has been a history of abuse, addiction, or financial deception in your relationship, mediation is not typically recommended. An abusive spouse may attempt to manipulate the other spouse into an unfair divorce settlement. You could be tricked or coerced into giving away your right to spousal support or into accepting an unfair division of the marital estate. Your divorce lawyer’s job is to protect your rights and advocate on your behalf.
Contact a Cook County Divorce Lawyer
If you want to end your marriage, you have several options. You and your spouse may be able to reach an agreement with help from your lawyers, through collaborative law, or through mediation. A distinguished Hinsdale divorce attorney from Botti Marinaccio, LTD can discuss all of your options with you and help you choose the legal avenue that is right for your situation. Call 630-575-8585 today to arrange a personalized consultation.