Divorce Mediation

Mediation is one process of alternate dispute resolution. Divorce mediation is a process that is used to help reach an amicable agreement without a lengthy court battle. The mediator is a neutral third-party, trained to facilitate negotiations between the parties with the goal of reaching an amicable resolution.  If resolution is achieved, the mediator prepares a Memorandum of Understanding which is a written, confidential, and non-binding document used to aid the parties in reaching final settlement.  Effective representation of clients participating in mediation requires the same level of preparation, diligence and assertiveness required in any case. The outcome of a mediation session depends, to a large degree, on the preparation of both the attorney and the client, as well as the ability of the client to compromise on settlement terms.  Having served as a mediator, or representing a client in a divorce mediation, we know that what lawyers do can make a big difference in the outcome.

Frequently Asked New Jersey Divorce Mediation Questions

How is divorce mediation different from litigation?

In traditional litigation, there are procedures and time frames imposed by the Court and Court Rules relative to evidence and discovery must be followed. Conversely, mediation is a more flexible process, empowering the parties to control the negotiations and settlement, and to use stipulations for items such as the value of the marital home.

Do I need a lawyer during mediation?

While not required, it is encouraged that an attorney accompany a client to mediation. This is a discussion that will be undertaken with each individual client, based on the facts and circumstances of their particular matter. At Lawrence Law, we are familiar with the mediation process. All of our attorneys are experienced in the mediation process and can advise a client during the mediation process. Since the mediator cannot give the parties legal advice, having an attorney accompany a client during the sessions is prudent.

Is mediation effective?

Mediation can work for a vast majority of clients. This is because it enables clients to make decisions and fashion solutions outside of what a Court would be able to do for the parties in a traditional litigation situation. At Lawrence Law, we have successful resolved many cases via mediation, whether via court-ordered or private mediation.

How long does divorce mediation take?

A divorce mediation may take one session if the matter does not involve complex issues. An agreement may usually be negotiated and fashioned in 2-3 sessions. Sessions usually last two to three hours, but the parties may choose to expand those sessions.

How much does mediation cost?

The cost of mediation is usually much lower than litigation, as it is typically a more expedited process.

What are the issues to be negotiated in divorce mediation?

All issues are capable of being mediated. For example, issues that may be negotiated include custody, parenting time, child support, college tuition, alimony/spousal support and equitable distribution (the division of property and assets).

When should divorce mediation be considered?

The decision to commence divorce mediation is an individual one which you should discuss with an attorney. At Lawrence Law, we can discuss the benefits of mediation and if it is right for you. 98-99% of all cases settle and often with the use of a mediator. Also, parties may choose to mediate at any stage. Mediation can commence prior to the filing of a Complaint for divorce, or even when the parties are already well into the litigation process.

How does mediation work for couples who cannot get along?

Parties can participate in the mediation using a process called caucusing. A caucus is a private meeting with the mediator, that is confidential. The mediator will go between the parties and discuss the issues of concern. If the parties cannot meet in the same room, the use of caucus can enable the parties to still mediate. This is often referred to as shuttle diplomacy and the mediator goes back and forth between conference rooms to individually meet with the parties.

What happens if one party refuses to participate?

Mediation is a voluntary process. When the parties are involved in divorce litigation, there will come a time that the court will order the parties to attend economic mediation.

What should we expect from the mediator?

The mediator will listen to each party’s concerns and goals. The mediator will guide the parties as they negotiate and fashion their agreement and help facilitate the resolution of issues.

 

News
Jeralyn Lawrence to Speak to Barry I. Croland Family Law American Inn of Court

Jeralyn Lawrence, Founder and Managing Member of Lawrence Law, will participate on the Barry I. Croland Family Law American Inn of Court upcoming panel discussion entitled “A Practical Approach to Ethics: Things Matrimonial Attorneys Should Know and Do to Protect Themselves”. The program will be moderated by Lynne Strober, Esq. Lawrence will join other panelists…

Read More
Blog
Divorcing Police Officers Face Unique Parenting Time Issues

Divorcing police officers and firefighters, like other clients, face a multitude of issues.  For most parties, the paramount concern is custody and parenting time when there are children born of the marriage. For most parents who work “9 to 5” jobs, there will be a traditional custody and parenting time arrangement.  This agreement is either…

Read More
News
Jeralyn Lawrence and Rita Aquilio Present Hot Tips in Family Law

Jeralyn Lawrence, Founder and Managing Member of Lawrence Law, and Rita Aquilio, a divorce lawyer with Lawrence Law, will speak at the NJICLE Hot Tips in Family Law program. Every year, attorneys turn to NJICLE’s Hot Tips to hear fast-paced advice from 45 of New Jersey’s leading matrimonial lawyers and retired judges. Lawrence will discuss…

Read More
News
Lawrence Law is Proud to Sponsor Autism Think Tank, NJ

Lawrence Law is a proud sponsor of “Dueling Pianos at the Stone House” benefiting the Autism Think Tank. This fundraising event is being held at The Stone House at Stirling Ridge in Warren, New Jersey on November 22 from 7:00-11:00 pm. For more information or to purchase tickets, please visit here. The Autism Think Tank,…

Read More
Blog
Cohabitation – Don’t Misquote, Misapply or Misuse Landau v. Landau

Landau v. Landau does not address the merits of what is or is not cohabitation. Further, this case does not address whether the facts specific to it establish prima facia evidence of cohabitation. Landau does stand for the proposition that a court must first find a prima facia showing of cohabitation before it can order…

Read More
Call Now ButtonCall Us