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How Are Mediation and Collaborative Divorce Different?

There are many matters that you and your spouse are going to have to agree on before your divorce can be finalized. Going through the courts to solve every issue can be expensive, and after all of that you could end up having a judge make decisions that make both parties unhappy. This is why our Morris County, NJ divorce lawyers try to introduce clients to alternate forms of dispute resolution, like mediation and collaborative divorce.

How Does Mediation Work?

In mediation, you have a third party who helps you and your spouse come to an agreement on the important issues that must be addressed before you can get divorced. This mediator is neutral, and their goal is to get you to put emotions aside and focus on the task at hand.

The mediator wants to help you come to an arrangement that both you and your spouse find acceptable. You may not get everything that you want, but you can talk it out and make a fair agreement. This mediator will not offer you legal advice, but you can hire a lawyer of your own to advise you outside of these sessions.

What is a Collaborative Divorce?

A collaborative divorce does not require a neutral third party. Instead, you, your spouse, and your lawyers come together to work out an agreement on crucial matters like child custody, spousal support, and property division. There will be a series of meetings and you can discuss what you both want, bring in professionals like childcare experts to consult, and eventually come to an agreement that both sides can live with.

The key difference here is the presence of lawyers. If you’re more comfortable with having legal representation with you when you negotiate, this could be the ideal dispute resolution method for you.

What Are Some Advantages of Mediation and Collaborative Divorce?

As we mentioned, litigation can be quite expensive. Coming to an agreement with your spouse through mediation or a collaborative divorce is likely to be far less expensive. Mediation is usually the least expensive of the two.

These methods can also be quicker. Mediation can take just a few months. Collaborative divorce can take longer, but it’s still usually a faster and less contentious process than going through the courts would be.

How Do I Know If Mediation or Collaborative Divorce Will Work For Me?

These methods do not work for everyone though. Collaborative divorce or mediation can be good for couples who can actually speak to each other and put their emotions aside in pursuit of a common goal. If you are not on speaking terms with your spouse or you tend to argue about every little thing, you could struggle to make the most of these processes.

Contact Our Lawyers

If you are going through a divorce, make sure that you have an experienced lawyer on your side, fighting for your interests. Contact Townsend, Tomaio & Newmark to schedule a consultation with our team. We are ready to help you find a conflict resolution method that works for you.