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joliet divorce lawyerFor couples who are considering a divorce but would like to avoid a sometimes-lengthy divorce court process, mediation may be the answer. Mediation may allow the couple to work out their divorce in a less confrontational and more collaborative setting. Through mediation, couples can negotiate all the terms of their divorce, including child custody, division of property and assets, division of debt, and spousal support. Even though the goal of mediation is often to avoid divorce court, it is still essential to have an attorney who can prepare you for the mediation process and help you advocate for your rights and interests.

Benefits of Mediation

The mediation process has several benefits for couples who can set aside their differences and work together to reach a settlement.

  • Saves time and money – Working with your spouse through mediation can generally take less time than going through divorce court. Time can be saved in planning for negotiations and avoiding the wait to get on a court’s docket. Less time also means it is a less costly option.

  • A higher degree of satisfaction – Since the spouses are driving the voluntary process, they often feel a more of a sense of collaboration. They may be more willing to make appropriate decisions and sacrifices to reach a conclusion. Neither spouse should feel rushed through the proceedings or pressured to approve of a decision they disagree with.

  • Less acrimony – With a path to a final resolution in sight, spouses may feel more at ease, reducing the tensions that may have built up in the last months or years of their marriage.

Mediation is not for everyone. If couples cannot come together to work and agree on some or all of the details of their divorce, try to manipulate or take advantage of the process, or just can’t come to a resolution, it may be time to set mediation aside. If the mediation process is not successful and the divorce will proceed through divorce court, we are ready to negotiate and advocate on your behalf.

Contact a Joliet Divorce Mediation Lawyer

If you are nearing a divorce and would like to learn more about mediation and if it may be the right path for you, contact a Will County Divorce Attorney at Law Offices of Tedone and Morton, P.C.. Our skilled lawyers work closely with clients to help them understand the mediation process and protect their best interests. Contact our office at 815-666-1285 to set up your free consultation today.


How Does the Divorce Mediation Process Work?

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Joliet divorce mediation attorneyEven though divorce is common, there are a lot of misconceptions about the process. Movies and TV shows can make the breakup of marriage seem very dramatic, with couples and their attorneys fighting legal battles in courtroom trials. In reality, most divorces are handled outside of the courtroom, and while spouses may be represented by attorneys, they usually work to reach a settlement, and they may only attend court to finalize the divorce process. In many cases, the best way to complete the divorce process quickly, efficiently, and effectively is through mediation.

Understanding the Mediation Process

When a couple uses mediation, they will agree to work together to create a divorce settlement that they can both agree on. They will do so with the help of a mediator, and while the mediator may be an attorney, they will not represent either party. Instead, the mediator is a neutral advisor who helps facilitate discussions while suggesting possible solutions and making sure the spouses address all outstanding issues.

Mediation usually takes place over several sessions which may last one or more hours. During these sessions, the spouses will identify the issues that need to be addressed and resolved, and they will work together to reach agreements. Matters that may be discussed may include:

  • Property division - Spouses can identify all of the marital assets they own and determine how to divide these assets fairly. The mediator may help spouses understand the ways different property may be valued, as well as any issues related to complex assets such as real estate, retirement benefits, or business interests. By working together to reach the most mutually beneficial arrangements, addressing ownership of property that may have sentimental value, and determining how to divide marital debts, the spouses can ensure that their divorce settlement will provide each of them with the financial resources they need.

  • Child custody - The mediator can help divorcing parents create a parenting plan that fully details how they will work together to raise their children. This plan will detail how the parents will make decisions for their children, while also including a schedule for the parenting time children will spend with each parent. It can also address any other issues the parents want to include, such as rules they will follow, appropriate methods of discipline, and methods they will use to resolve any disputes that may arise in the future. By cooperating during mediation to resolve child-related issues, parents can establish the foundation for a new co-parenting relationship that will allow them to work together to provide for their children’s best interests in the years to come.

  • Spousal support - In some cases, one spouse may need financial support from the other spouse to maintain their standard of living following divorce. Mediation will allow spouses to address this issue and ensure that a stay-at-home parent or a spouse who earns a lower income will be able to meet their needs and take steps to become self-supporting. The spouses can discuss their individual financial circumstances and reach agreements on whether spousal support will be appropriate, the amount that will be paid, and the length of time that payments will last.

At the conclusion of the mediation process, the spouses will have a final divorce settlement that addresses all issues related to the dissolution of their marriage. Both spouses must be in complete agreement about all of the terms of their settlement. They can then attend a prove-up hearing where a judge will sign off on their divorce decree and legally dissolve their marriage.

Contact Our Plainfield Divorce Mediation Lawyers

At the Law Offices of Tedone & Morton, P.C., we help our clients understand when mediation may be a beneficial way to resolve divorce disputes. We help spouses prepare for the mediation process and ensure that they understand their rights. If there are any issues that cannot be resolved through mediation, we can advocate on our clients’ behalf during courtroom litigation. Contact our Joliet divorce mediation attorneys at 815-666-1285 to set up a free consultation today.


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