Divorce is a process that is often filled with personal stress, and certainly involves complicated legal and financial issues. Having to settle all of this through courtroom litigation adds to the stress, and removes control of the outcome from spouses, putting it into the hands of a New York family law judge. Mediation is where a neutral third party works with spouses to help them privately reach a settlement. Guilford Law Group, PLLC will guide clients through this process with strategic thinking, thoughtful negotiation, and personal empathy.
Our Manhattan mediation lawyer serves clients across all five boroughs of New York City and throughout Rockland County and Westchester County. Call today at (646) 783-0074 or reach out here online to set up a consultation.
The state of New York believes in mediation, not just in divorces, but all civil disputes generally. The concept of presumptive mediation means that spouses in most circumstances will need to at least give this process a try before going to court. It does not apply in all cases—for instance, a spouse who is the victim of domestic violence would not be required to go through mediation. But presumptive mediation will apply in most cases, and there are several advantages this can offer to spouses…
- Settling a divorce in mediation is often more financially efficient than going through litigation. The timeframe of a trial is often longer, and the contested nature of litigation can require more attorney hours in preparation than a negotiated settlement.
- What happens in mediation stays in mediation. The spouses and the mediator are bound by confidentiality. Spouses may prefer to have their personal issues stay that away. This can be particularly true when children are involved.
- A mediator, as a fresh observer to the conflict, is often able to see solutions that those directly involved may miss. Mediators have the past experience of similar disputes to draw on and make recommendations.
- A mediator’s suggestions are just that—suggestions. The spouses are not bound to accept them. They retain complete control over the outcome, unlike a courtroom where that control is ceded to the judge.
- That control extends to scheduling and timeline. In a trial, the judge decides when the hearing is going to be. If mediation, the spouses decide what dates and times work for them. In a world where everyone is busy with work and other commitments, and perhaps shuttling children to school and extracurricular activities, this ability to control one’s schedule can be a big deal for quality of life.
- The collaborative nature of mediation means the spouses are working together. This allows for a healthy way to end one chapter of life and begin a new one. If the spouses will still be raising children together, the need to get the new chapter off to a good start is even more important. Mediation can help.
The Manhattan mediation attorney at Guilford Law Group, PLLC serves both English and Spanish-speaking clients. Get in touch with us by calling (646) 783-0074 or by using our online contact form today.
Mediation is not necessarily easy. There are challenges. Certainly a prime example comes when there is abuse in the marriage. As noted above, this is an example where presumptive mediation may not be required. A spouse who has suffered abuse may still opt for mediation, but it can be structured so that the mediator meets with each party separately.
The unique dynamics of each relationship can also be a challenge. It’s not uncommon for one spouse to be more likely to assert their will, while the other spouse is often compliant. The latter spouse may be concerned that this will happen again in their settlement negotiations. It’s the job of their Manhattan mediation lawyer to ensure that doesn’t happen.
Ultimately, the success of mediation calls for both spouses to be completely open with each other. That can be hard to do in a situation that exists because of the breakdown of a relationship. The way to start is with complete transparency regarding financial documents. From there, the spouses and their attorneys, with help from the mediator, can gradually work towards a good, candid discussion of what’s most important to each side in the settlement.
What matters most in a divorce settlement is our client’s future and that of their children. The settlement agreement is the first step in shaping that future. That’s why we work so hard on every detail. Let us work for you next. Call today at (646) 783-0074 or contact us online to set up a consultation.
Exceptional intellect, legal acumen, and compassion that make him an effective advocate.- Former Client