Mediation, Negotiation, Collaboration, or Something Else?

Wakeman Law Group - Mediation, Negotiation, Collaboration, or Something Else?

Clients express the desire to mediate, to have a collaborative or amicable break up. But, as we speak, it is clear that they really want something different from the word that was used. This came to my mind as my first Divorced Girl Smiling podcast dropped this week. Here is the link:

The host, Jackie Pilossoph, referred to mediation as the best way to resolve a breakup/divorce. I agreed, but added in my head…. “or negotiation or collaborative process – whatever keeps you out of court!” These processes are usually less expensive, less formal, less adversarial, and less stressful than a trial. The solution is almost always more complete than what would happen at trial. People are more inclined to comply with a negotiated agreement.

Mediation: In family law, mediation is ordered by the court if the parties have not reached an agreement regarding parenting issues by a set time. The parties meet with a neutral third party to work toward a resolution limited to parenting issues. Since it is court-ordered, couples go into the process involuntarily, so it may be less effective than when the parties agree to participate. This avoids the expense of attorneys, but when lawyers write the legal documents, revisions often are made if it favors one party or the other or if it is not in the best interests of the children since the dominant party presses to attain their goals. Participants in court-ordered mediation should enter the process intending to compromise, but just give up.

Mediation conducted outside of the court process can include attorneys. Bullying is reduced since the lawyers can make suggestions that a mediator may not be able to make. Financial issues can also be addressed. This is sensible, since parenting time and support are closely related.

Next month: collaboration and negotiation.

For more information, please contact:

Wakeman Law Group, PC

741 S. McHenry Ave., Suite A

Crystal Lake, IL 60014

Ph: 815-893-6800

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