Divorce is often accompanied by disagreement between partners. When you and your partner separate and cannot agree with each other, conflicts will arise that in some cases can even escalate. A divorce can sometimes bring out the bad in someone because of their emotions. In such a case, you can call in a lawyer to get your legal right. He will be able to start legal proceedings on your behalf. However, there is a good chance that your children, for example, could suffer a lot as a result. To avoid these tensions, you can also opt for a divorce by means of mediation. In practice, this is often referred to as divorce mediation.
What is mediation?
Whoever has a dispute wants to get rid of it as soon as possible. Often a dispute has already reached such a high level that both parties no longer see a solution. Mediation can change that. Mediation is the joint resolution of a dispute with the help of a neutral conflict mediator: the mediator. More information about mediation in general can be found on our mediation page.
What are the benefits of divorce mediation?
A poorly arranged divorce can cause grief and frustration for years to come. Mediation is a way to come to a joint solution in consultation, for example about how to deal with the children, the distribution of the money, possible alimony and agreements about the pension.
When parties can come to agreements in a mediation process, we will include this in a settlement agreement. Subsequently, the agreements made can be ratified by the court.
In a divorce where the parties face each other in court, one of the parties will often have his or her way and the other party is the loser, as it were. In mediation, there are no losers. In mediation, an attempt is made to solve problems together, so that a win-win situation arises for both parties. This is especially important in case parties will have to deal with each other a lot after the divorce. Think, for example, of the situation that children are involved. In that case, it is important that ex-partners can still go through one door together after the divorce. Another advantage of mediation is that it is often cheaper and less burdensome than lengthy legal proceedings.
How does mediation work?
In mediation, parties talk to each other under the guidance of a professional mediator. The mediator is an independent mediator who, together with the parties, looks for a solution that is acceptable to everyone. The mediator not only looks at the legal side of the case, but also at any underlying problems. The parties then come to a joint solution, which the mediator records in a settlement agreement. The mediator does not express an opinion. Mediation is therefore based on the will to reach agreements together, in confidence. This mediation process is smoother than a trial in court. Now that the agreements are made together, there is also a greater chance that the parties will adhere to them.
The mediator ensures that both parties can tell their own story and that each other is listened to. During the conversations with the mediator there will be sufficient attention for the emotions of the parties. The emotions need to be discussed before good agreements can be made. In addition, a mediator ensures that the agreements made by the parties are legally correct.
The four steps in mediation
- The intake interview. In the first interview, the mediator clearly explains what mediation is. Then the parties sign a mediation agreement. In this agreement, the parties agree that the conversations are confidential, that they will participate voluntarily and that they will actively participate in the conversations. Parties are free to break off the mediation process at any time.
- The reconnaissance phase. Under the guidance of the mediator, the conflict is analysed until all points of view and interests are clear.
- The negotiation phase. Both parties come up with possible solutions. They keep in mind that the solution must be good for both parties. In this way, the necessary agreements are made.
- Make appointments. The mediator will eventually put all these agreements down on paper in, for example, a settlement agreement, a parenting plan or a divorce covenant. This is then submitted to the court for ratification.
Do you also want to arrange your divorce by making joint arrangements? Or would you like to know whether mediation can be a good solution for you? Feel free to contact our office. We will be happy to help you make a choice for mediation.