Is Divorce Mediation Right for You?

Divorce mediation.

Is Divorce Mediation Right for You?

Divorces, especially when contested, can be lengthy, costly, and emotionally grueling for both parties involved. Likewise, even divorces that appear uncontested initially can bring up unexpected disagreements on unforeseen or unexpected issues.

Mediation is a process where a professional mediator will sit down with both parties together to foster positive communication and discussion that can help the parties to arrive at agreements on their own terms without the involvement of attorneys or court judges. Mediation can help you to come to terms regarding issues such as:

Mediation can help divorcing couples come to agreements more quickly and efficiently than going through the court process.  Mediation often comes with a cost per session, but this tends to be less expensive than the ultimate cost of attorney’s fees for those who have hired on a divorce lawyer. Divorce mediation’s ability to keep negotiations out of the courtroom enables couples to keep their mediation discussions confidential.

What Happens in Divorce Mediation Sessions?

Mediation can be done privately or through court-order. Regardless, the mediator will be a neutral third-party. Prior to mediation, the parties should compile their financial information and have an idea of their desired parenting plans. For anyone who has retained a family law attorney, your lawyer will help you prepare for mediation. The mediation process includes:

  • The explanation of expectations and mediation session rules.
  • Identification of the contested issues that require resolution, with each party free to express their views on each matter.
  • Exploration of possible solutions to all matters, led by the mediator’s professional guidance and expertise.
  • The drafting of a mediation agreement, noting all agreements that were made by the parties in that session.

How do Mediation Agreements Become Finalized?

Mediation agreements are not finalized until they are filed with the Court. It is wise to have an attorney review any agreements that arise from mediation prior to filing to check for any inconsistencies or possible issues.

When is Divorce Mediation Not Advised?

Mediation is typically not recommended in cases that involve:

  • High conflict.
  • Extremely contested issues.
  • Domestic violence.
  • Substance abuse.
  • Mental health issues.
  • A spouse completely unwilling to negotiate or participate.

Situations such as these typically require the full process of court proceedings, family law attorneys, and possibly even trial in order to come to a resolution.

Where are the Court-Ordered Mediation Services?

The superior courts throughout Arizona may offer their own mediation services. These include:

Maricopa County Superior Court Conciliation Services

Pima County Superior Court Mediation through Conciliation Court

Yavapai County Superior Court Conciliation Court

Mohave County Superior Court Mediation Center

Coconino County Superior Court Conciliation Court


Rideout Law Group handles cases throughout the entire state of Arizona, with offices located in Scottsdale and Lake Havasu City. Our attorneys are experienced in handling contested family law cases. For a free consultation, call 480-584-3328.

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