Florida Divorce Mediation

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Divorce Mediation is a voluntary process which is considered by parties as a substitute for approaching the Court.

Process of Florida Divorce Mediation

  • The divorce mediator and the parties assemble at a non-judicial location
  • The parties discuss their areas of disagreement and the divorce mediator helps both the parties
  • In order to participate in mediation, it is not essential to have a no-fault divorce
  • Any issue may be taken for discussion in the mediation
  • The divorce mediator must be a professional understanding family law
  • The divorce mediator cannot represent a party legally
  • The divorce mediator may or may not be a divorce lawyer
  • The parties have total control over the outcome of mediation
  • The divorce mediator just guides and hopes for resolution
  • Mediation can be begun at any moment in the divorce process

Criteria for selection of Florida Divorce Mediation

Divorce mediation is not suitable for all parties. It is not at all advisable in the following cases-

  • Financial irregularities
  • Substance abuse
  • Hiding of marital property
  • Domestic violence or abuse

In the above mentioned cases, adept legal help is essential and the adversarial system of Courts is the right way to settle the disputes. Divorce lawyers play key roles in finding out the facts and persuading the judge to favor their client.

If the splitting parties can -

  • Decide for themselves the terms of the split
  • Form the rules for interaction after the divorce

Then, mediation is a cost-effective and straightforward method which decreases the impact and stress of this alteration in the life. By adopting the process of mediation, one can avoid the high expenses of lawsuit and the acrimony amongst the parties.

Financial aspect of mediation

Some law firms in this state charge for mediation on a session wise basis. The first session may be for 3 hours and in the current year (2009), this session was charged at almost 985 USD. If more sessions are required, then these are arranged in 2 hour blocks. The charge for these additional sessions in the year 2009 was approx. 595 USD. It has been recorded that a majority of mediations are over either after the first or second session.

Preparation for the mediation conference

While starting out for the mediation conference, one should bring the following documents -

  • Closing files on all real estate
  • Appraisals
  • Deeds
  • IRA & 401k statements
  • Pay stubs
  • Tax returns
  • Mortgage statements
  • Credit card statements
  • Financial affidavits

Additionally, one should make an estimate of the future personal economical resources and requirements beforehand. Also, the parties must be prepared to talk regarding the finances and parenting plan in detail.

Significance of a mediator

It is the duty of the mediator to retain calmness in the mediation conference and ensure that there is concentration regarding the settlement discussion. The mediator ensures that the discussion is continuing and all the alternatives are being compared.

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