Though nearly 50% of marriages end in divorce, a number of them can end civilly, and with mutual agreement. Divorce mediation can produce agreement in the majority of cases.
In mediation, you’ll decide on core issues at the heart of divorce, which may include things like division of property and assets, custody, and child support.
The Divorce Mediation Process
Mediation is a legal proceeding in which disputing parties work with a neutral third party (i.e., a mediator) to attempt to reach an agreement on the points of contention. As such, mediation allows both parties to have a more active role in developing the solution to their disputes. This is in contrast to a contested divorce, which proceeds through the courts.
Choosing an informal divorce process is an effective method of resolving divorce disputes, and can save spouses time and money. With an informal divorce, spouses can come together in a cooperative, non-adversarial environment to try to develop a fair, practical resolution to any conflicts arising out of the divorce.
In New Mexico divorce and child custody cases, mediation may be requested by the disputing parties, or it can be ordered by the court before the dispute goes before the family law judge.
Divorce: Mediation vs. Litigation
Why would someone choose the mediation process, rather than going to court?
- To save money. Divorce mediation can cost considerably less than the average $15,000 for a contested divorce. If a case is especially complicated, expect to spend $25,000 or more. By contrast, mediation will usually cost somewhere between $3,000-$8,000.
- To find resolution more quickly. Mediation is not bound to the court’s schedule, which can prolong the case and the process of resolving it. Taking this option can facilitate quicker resolutions within just a couple of months, as opposed to sometimes spending years on a litigated divorce.
- To keep the proceedings private. Court proceedings, including divorce, are part of the public record. Mediated divorces are not. It’s a more secure and private method of discussing and resolving disputes, especially for those who may be working out sensitive family matters. Result in more favorable outcomes – Given that collaborative divorce and mediation allow disputing
- To make a better agreement. From child support and visitation to equitable division of assets, a mediation can produce a more agreeable outcome for all parties. If each person comes to the table willing to compromise, then more creative and positive outcomes are possible.
Who Benefits from Mediation?
Divorce mediation might be for you if:
- The decision to divorce is mutual,
- Neither party has lied to the other about important matters;
- Each party is aware of the financial situation;
- There is no desire for reconciliation;
- Both spouses are amicable and desire to work together in the divorce.
If domestic violence is a factor, or either party is entirely unwilling to compromise or work together, then mediation is not the right choice.
Our compassionate and competent attorneys and mediators are here for you. If you’re getting a divorce in New Mexico, we can help. Reach out today.