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What does the divorce mediation process entail?

Married couples in New Mexico make a lot of difficult decisions together and individually. While it might not be an easy conversation to begin, if a couple has decided that it is best to end a marriage, the dissolution process must be initiated. Because there are several ways to go about getting a divorce, it is important to consider all divorce methods so the couple can determine what process best meets their needs. If money is tight, than a cost-effective dissolution method would be most ideal. Therefore, divorce mediation should be considered.

What does the divorce mediation process entail? Because most couples think of litigation when they think about divorce, many couples considering divorce might not fully understand what the mediation process requires from them. Additionally, divorcing couples might not be aware of the role a mediator plays in the process. Lastly, the benefits of this method over litigation and other divorce alternatives might not be known.

The role of a mediator is to serve as a neutral party that aids the divorcing couple as they work through and resolve their divorce issues. A mediator facilitates the communication between the spouses, allowing for each party to have their own uninterrupted time to speak.

The process begins with the divorcing couple and mediator meeting in a series of mediation sessions. The first meeting is used to identify any issues that need to be discussed, the order they will be discussed in and what information needs to be gathered and shared between the parties. The meetings that follows will focus on discussions that revolve around how to compromise or resolve any issues to meet the needs of both parties.

Both parties will review their final agreement, which the mediator may draft, with their attorneys and determine if it is accurate or requires charges. Once the agreement is reviewed and signed, it can be filed with the court along with any other necessary divorce filings.

While many divorcing couples utilize divorce mediation to avoid litigation and to save money, it can provide other benefits. It promotes communication during dissolution and provides an environment for a timely, amicable divorce. Although the divorce mediation process can be very positive and resourceful for some divorcing couples, it is not for everyone. Because of that, those going through a divorce should understand if this process is best for them.

Source: Family.findlaw.com, "Divorce Mediation FAQ," accessed March 7, 2016

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