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Is mediation a good method to determine child support payments?

Mediated child support arrangements are often better than court-ordered child support arrangements, since the process of mediation is done in such a way as to allow each party the opportunity to participate in the discussion. Mediation tends to keep anger and resentment at a minimum – something that is extremely useful when two parties are discussing what is best for the children involved in a divorce or separation. Since the mediation process is legally binding once a resolution has been made, neither party has to worry about the outcome being less enforceable than what it would have been if the courts had determined it.

Why should I use mediation to form a separation agreement?

When parties are going through a legal separation, there are usually two choices: litigate the case or reach an agreement. When the spouses litigate the case, they hand over decision-making authority to the judge. He or she has the power to make decisions over very important facets of a person's life, including property distribution, spousal support, child support and custody arrangements. Legal separation agreements may be accessed by the public. In contrast, mediation allows the parties to work out their own agreement regarding these issues that are personal to them. Additionally, mediation is a private and confidential process.

Why should I use mediation for my divorce when dealing with real property?

Real property is often valuable, and its disposition can affect both spouses for many years to come. When a couple litigates an issue regarding the distribution of real property, they allow a third party to make a decision. This decision may not ultimately take into account the specific needs and interests of the parties. Through mediation, the parties can draft an agreement that allows for greater creativity and flexibility. For example, the couple may decide to allow one spouse to remain in the house if he or she will have primary custody of the children and then relocate after this time.

What qualities should you look for in a great mediator?

An excellent mediator is great at making everyone involved feel comfortable and ready to communicate. In addition, the mediator you select should be interested in all aspects of the case. Finally, the right mediator will be able to stay committed to getting a resolution for the dispute that comes as close as possible to satisfying both parties.

How does guardianship mediation help preserve relationships?

One of the most significant advantages of participating in guardianship mediation is the ability to preserve important relationships once the legal dispute is resolved. Even though someone is typically declared a "winner" at the end of a court case, often neither party really wins. A party may be granted guardianship but lose a former and important ally in the process. Litigation often ends in even deeper wounds when someone feels victimized by the court process. In contrast, mediation lays the groundwork for effective communication, which can help clear up misunderstandings and promote stronger family bonds.

How does mediating a paternity issues work better than litigating the issue?

Paternity is the first legal step in acknowledging a father's right and responsibilities to his child. When parents are able to work together from the beginning, they can lay the groundwork for future interactions. After establishing paternity, parents can then work out other legal issues, such as constructing a parenting plan. Structuring a parenting plan can help the parents save money on litigating issues such as custody or visitation. Additionally, the parties are more likely to adhere to an agreement that they helped structure, avoiding future litigation expenses and creating a more amicable environment for the child.

I have been involved in same –sex relationship and we have decided to go separate ways after being together for 10 years. How can mediation help us come to an agreement on how to split our jointly owned property?

Without legal protection, resolving a dispute involving the fair distribution of jointly purchased and jointly owned property of same-sex couples can be a nightmare – particularly if the parties are not able to reach an agreement on how the situation should be resolved. In situations like this, mediation can be a wonderful tool to help settle property or custody disputes after a relationship ends.

Mediation has been proven to be a highly effective means to reach an agreement that is beneficial to both sides involved in the conflict, and is conducted by a third party who is non-biased and trained in mediation.