Starting the divorce process is a bit like filing your taxes on your own for the first time. There are general guidelines that are simple enough to follow, but the details and complications of a relationship can make the divorce process seem daunting and drawn-out. What’s more, there are legal standards that must be followed when creating a divorce settlement, and most people aren’t well-versed in what a “legally equitable divorce agreement” means. At Amber M. Serwat Mediation, our Burnsville, MN mediator can help you understand the ins and outs of divorce, create a legal divorce agreement that will be approved without delay, and walk you through the requirements of a Minnesota divorce mediator so that you feel comfortable working with us.

What is a Divorce Mediator?

First and foremost, it’s important for you to understand what divorce mediators do and how they do it. A divorce mediator has the legal expertise to help you navigate every element of your divorce and then make sure your divorce is filed correctly. A divorce mediator adheres to the legal requirements of divorce when helping divorcing couples reach agreements so that a judge can quickly approve the agreement without taking issue with any elements that might be legally unfair to one party or another. An advantage of working with a divorce mediator is that he or she operates as a neutral third party, offering advice and information to both parties. This allows for a more peaceful, less conflict-fueled divorce, and it also helps ensure a speedy divorce.

Mediated Divorce VS Legal Settlements and Courtroom Divorces

Working with a divorce mediator is not the same as hiring an attorney. An attorney can either lead you through divorce settlement proceedings or represent you in a courtroom divorce. A divorce mediator works with you and your former partner in a neutral setting, answering questions and helping you talk through any issues you might encounter, allowing you to save money, time, and stress in your divorce.

Mediated Divorce Process and Mediation Time frame

When you begin the mediation process, you don’t have to commit to using a mediator right away; you can get a feel for what the process is like first by sitting down with our divorce mediator and talking through the unique circumstances of your divorce. This includes getting information about what information you’ll need for the divorce process and how you can save money, and getting comfortable with your mediator before committing to the process.
The mediation process should take only 6-8 hours total throughout multiple sessions, and then the paperwork can take 1-8 weeks to process through the court. Using the following steps as a guideline, we will focus on the three main elements of divorce: property division, financial support, and creating a parenting plan.

1. Prioritize issues to be addressed, and create an action plan
2. Determine what information needs to be shared
3. Determine whether addition professional help is needed
4. Document property (assets and liabilities)
5. Decide how to divide marital property
6. Create budgets for separate living
7. Create spousal support (alimony) and child support agreements based on financial need
8. Create a parenting plan that’s detailed and functional

Once each of these steps has been followed, your divorce documents will be in the form of a Memorandum of Agreement, which your mediator will file through the court to get your divorce approved. If you want a Burnsville, Minnesota divorce mediator, or if you have questions about Minnesota divorce mediator requirements, contact Amber M. Serwat Mediation at 952-252-1492 or amber@amsmediationplus.com.