There are many reasons why a couple decides to divorce. Some are for more nefarious things, such as adultery, abuse or prison time, but many divorces occur for no one particular reason.
Most divorces in this country are no-fault divorces. For couples who want the process of divorce to go as smoothly as possible, mediation may be the right choice.
No-fault divorce explanation
According to FindLaw, a no-fault divorce occurs when the spouse that files for the divorce does not need to have a specific reason or prove fault against the other. “Irreconcilable differences” is a commonly used phrase for a no-fault divorce. In some instances, the state may require the spouses to have a trial separation before filing can occur.
Mediation benefits and tips
According to Money Crashers, divorce mediation is a popular alternative to litigation because it is less expensive and less stressful. The process includes both spouses and a neutral third-party known as the mediator. The mediator guides conversations between the spouses to determine the division of property, debts and assets; living arrangements; child custody; spousal alimony and more.
When the two parties are unable to come to an agreement, the mediator asks additional questions and comes up with creative solutions. The process allows for better communication between the two spouses.
Some mediators charge by the hour, while others charge a flat fee. Couples can help with time efficiency by planning for each session. This includes gathering all relevant documents, such as bank statements, mortgage papers and retirement accounts, and thinking about what they are willing to negotiate.
Mediation works for the majority of couples, but there are exceptions. It will not be effective if one spouse does not want a divorce or refuses to communicate or engage in the process. Mediation is also not a good choice if there is violence or addiction in the relationship.