Parting After a Lifetime: How Mediation Can Help Reduce the Stress of Divorce

By on November 18, 2019

The breaking of a family is always a tragedy, especially if you’ve been together for decades. There is absolutely no way for this to not be painful, even if your kids are now adults and the divorce should seem less stressful overall. If this tragedy does happen in your life, you have a few options that will help you get through it. One of those is mediation that can help navigate your divorce and make the legal side of it run more smoothly.

Divorce mediation is rather different from hiring a divorce lawyer. It’s essential that you understand these differences so you can decide which kind of service will best suit your personal situation.

Divorce Lawyer Vs. a Mediator: What’s the Difference?

First of all, you need to understand that usually, a divorce lawyer is a legal expert that represents only one of the parties. That’s why spouses are advised to retain the services of different lawyers so that these professionals can perform their duties as well as keep their loyalties.

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In this case, the lawyer’s priority is securing the client’s best interests. If they are unable to achieve this through negotiation, they will move on to the next logical step, litigation.

This means that you’ll be facing a lengthy court case that will demand a lot of money and bring you even more stress. Depending on the situation, such divorces can drag on for years, and all this time you wouldn’t be able to rest or fully move on with your life.

That’s why it’s always best to aim for an uncontested divorce, especially in states like California, New York, Arkansas, and a few other places where divorcing is both expensive and complicated. This is where mediators come into play because the role of this professional is not to protect one of you but to help you find a resolution that provides the best possible outcome for both of you. Moreover, they will also prioritize the children’s wellbeing during negotiation.

A mediator does not have the power that a divorce attorney does when they represent you. It’s you and your spouse who hold all the power to make any decisions. The mediator, in turn, does exactly what their role defines. This means that the mediate your dispute to help you cool down your heads and negotiate calmly.

Please, be advised that unlike attorneys, mediators aren’t regulated by any supervisory authority. Therefore, should you decide to retain the services of one, you will have to research their background and reputation.

It’s imperative that you hire a mediator who is actually qualified and experienced in the field of mediation, not a retired attorney or a judge. This type of work requires a specialized skill set that includes a profound understanding of psychology, finances, and legalities surrounding a divorce. A person with only one of these skills is, most likely, unable to be the neutral yet supportive mediator you need.

When to Hire a Divorce Attorney or a Mediator?

You should retain the services of an experienced divorce lawyer if your conflict with your spouse is too big or traumatic for you to negotiate it successfully. Sadly, many divorces of long-married couples are like this. If nothing else, the division of assets usually causes problems in these cases. If this is what’s happening to you, you need someone who will fight for you with unyielding dedication.

Bear in mind the costs of hiring a divorce attorney and make sure that you are prepared to cover your bills when the time comes.

Also, you might have to retain a lawyer based on the size of your estate. It’s a mandatory requirement for some states.

However, if you and your spouse can be reasonable, at least most of the time, you should try mediation. This will make the whole process less stressful and reduce your overall divorce costs significantly.

But keep in mind the warning about hiring the right kind of mediator.


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Parting After a Lifetime: How Mediation Can Help Reduce the Stress of Divorce