If you are ending your marriage, you may be exploring the various divorce options available in Illinois. There are many routes to divorce, and the path you choose will depend on your unique circumstances and needs. Mediation is an alternative resolution method that may help you and your spouse end your marriage without Court intervention. Mediation can be a cost-effective means of resolving disagreements about child custody, the division of marital assets, spousal maintenance, and other divorce issues. However, many people are unfamiliar with the mediation process and how mediation can help them during a divorce. They ask, “What does a mediator actually do?”
Understanding the Role of a Mediator in an Illinois Divorce
Before we discuss what a mediator does, it is useful to explore what a mediator does not do. A mediator does not make a decision for the couple or provide legal representation. He or she does not choose sides. The mediator’s job is to help the couple reach their own conclusions about divorce issues. To do so, the mediator may:
- Facilitate constructive discussion – Most divorcing spouses struggle with effective communication. They sit down intending to discuss the parenting time schedule, ownership of the marital home, or another important divorce concern, only to end up fighting and arguing instead.
- Help the couple find common ground – There are countless different issues a couple must address when divorcing. A mediator can help spouses identify which divorce concerns they agree on and which they disagree on. This allows the couple to narrow their focus and ensure conversations are productive.
- Keep the conversation on track – Understandably, divorcing spouses can get off track when discussing divorce matters. Without a mediator, the spouses’ discussions may devolve into arguments over old hurts or issues unrelated to the task at hand.
- Help the couple find solutions – A mediator’s primary job is to help the couple find solutions to their disagreements. The mediator may accomplish this by helping the couple discuss the pros and cons of different options and suggesting compromises.
Benefits of Mediation
Mediation is cost-effective and much less antagonistic than divorce litigation. Mediation can help spouses find common ground and reach customized solutions. For parents, mediation can help the couple discuss divorce issues in a respectful, cooperative manner. This can help the parents remain on good terms even after the divorce – something that benefits the children greatly. Mediation is also confidential. When you work with a mediator, you can be safe in knowing your private affairs will be kept private.
Contact a Palatine Divorce Lawyer and Mediator
Arlington Heights family law attorney Nicholas W. Richardson is not only a skilled divorce lawyer, he is also an experienced meditator. If you want to learn more about how mediation can help you solve divorce issues, contact The Law Office of Nicholas W. Richardson, P.C. today. Call 847.873.6741 for a free consultation.