When you think about the idea of divorce, you may assume that the process will be filled with conflict, stress, financial challenges and general difficulty. Divorce mediation offers you a way to complete the divorce process with less stress, less of a financial burden, and less conflict. Mediation is set up to encourage collaboration and working together toward a common goal. Does this sound appealing? Well, most Minnesota courts actually encourage couples to try mediation before litigation for these reasons (and to relieve the scheduled backlog in the court system). Here are some keys to participating in a successful mediator divorce.
Understand the process: The mediation process is very different from a court battle. Instead of hiring lawyers to negotiate the terms of your divorce and leaving the ultimate decision in the hands of a judge, you and your partner become the ones making the decisions, with guidance from your mediator. Your mediator can help you through the process but will not make decisions about your case. You and your ex develop a plan for things like dividing your property and developing a plan for custody. The entire divorce process can be managed through mediation which can save you time, money and stress.
Define your priorities: As you begin the mediation process, it can be very helpful to go ahead and define your priorities. Perhaps that is a scheduling issue related to your children, or a special possession that you want to keep. Understanding what is important to you and what might be important to your ex can give you a starting point in negotiating a fair settlement.
Be open and flexible: It can be very difficult to communicate openly and honestly during the divorce process in large part because it is likely that your communication was strained during your marriage. Your mediator can give you tips for this and help you when the communication gets strained during the mediation sessions.
Communicate without emotion when possible: While there are many emotions that must be worked through about the end of your marriage, the mediation process can be looked at as more transactional. Focus on each individual issue you face and try not to spend time looking back at what went wrong, who was wrong, etc. Your mediator can help with this as well.
AMS Mediation can help you with a successful divorce mediation process. For more information, give us a call at 952-252-1492.