Who Is In Charge?
In litigation, although the parties must live with the results and no one is more personally affected by the process or outcome than the parties, the parties can often feel like minor characters in their own play.
The representing attorneys, the mandates of the contested process, the judge, and the settlement panel – all become involved and all have the control that once belonged to the parties.
In mediation, you are in charge.
By engaging proactively in your divorce, clients increase their sense of control and power, thereby heightening your sense of self and well-being.
The mediator offers guidance, support, and information. The clients make the ultimate decisions.
Who Are Good Candidates for Mediation?
People who are willing to mediate.
Even high-conflict parties with multiple difficult issues upon which they do not agree are good candidates for mediation provided they are willing.
How Do I Know if He/she Is Disclosing All of His/her Assets and Earnings?
Mediation mandates full disclosure by each party.
The mediator retains the right to terminate mediation in the event clients refuse to be completely forthcoming with all of their financial information.
However, clients entering mediation have the expectation of openness and transparency. They agree that this is the most direct path to a satisfactory resolution.
Who Will Protect Me?
In the adversarial system, participants feel attacked, so it makes good sense to enlist a professional to fight on your behalf.
In mediation, clients are not cast as adversaries fighting one another and so there is nothing to defend against.
Clients are encouraged to work together, maintain a respectful and candid environment, and focus on addressing the issues from different angles.
What About the Past?
In litigation, parties spend a great deal of time, energy, and money reconstructing and deconstructing the past.
Litigation focuses on who is to blame and how they should pay.
Mediation focuses on what is needed for the parties to move forward.
Mediation acknowledges that human relationships are difficult and while there is usually fault to go around, assigning blame normally does not result in a sustainable resolution.
In mediation, parties stand in the present and focus on the future.
Who Makes the Decisions?
Mediation is premised on the belief that those directly involved and most affected by the outcome are the most appropriate and informed people to make decisions.