It may seem as if leaving your spouse is one of the hardest you will ever have to make. But there are many decisions in the days ahead regarding your separation. One of them involves choosing to settle your divorce with mediation or litigation.
Many people are so quick to rush down the path to mediation that they fail to realize it is not meant for every divorce situation. Sometimes, it is more beneficial for separating couples to go through the litigation process to ensure a fair outcome. Before you make any further decisions about your divorce circumstances, review the circumstances to help you decide if mediation is right for you.
Are you able and willing to consider the other party’s needs?
It can be hard for you to sympathize with your ex-spouse’s point of view and needs when you harbor negative feelings for them. In order for you to benefit from mediation, you and your soon-to-be-ex-partner must be willing to work together. You do not need to agree with your ex's perspectives, but you must be willing to consider them.
Is there is a history of violence?
If your spouse abused or mistreated you in any way during your marriage, it may be better for you to consider litigation. Abusive partners are not willing to consider the needs and wants of anyone else unless it benefits them and may resort to aggression and intimidation to get what they want. Trying to take a meditative approach to a divorce where abuse or violence are factors can lead to expensive delays in the separation process. Litigation allows the courts to intervene and take charge of your situation to keep you from being taken advantage of.
Are you hoping to finalize things quickly?
If you are looking for the fastest divorce solution, mediation is not the answer. Couples trying to benefit from meditation must be willing to invest the time to negotiate. Divorce litigation may be the less lengthy choice, because the courts do not need you and your spouse to be amicable towards one another to reach a settlement. Sometimes people start the mediation process to work out their co-parenting issues to reach an arrangement that works best for them. Then they may take a hiatus before resuming negotiations to finalize their divorces.
You may want to use the mediation process to retain control over your situation and smooth things over between you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse. But if there are issues that can affect your safety, peace of mind, rights and settlement, you may want to consider other divorce options.