It is important that individuals who are thinking about filing for divorce understand the different options they have for bringing the relationships to their legal ends. In Massachusetts, a person may choose to litigate their divorce through the courts and this is generally considered the traditional path to divorce. However, they may also use the mediation process to work with their spouses and to come up with collaborative solutions to their property, custody and financial concerns.
During a mediated divorce a person and their spouse will work with a neutral third party to evaluate the many matters that must be settled before their union may be broken. The neutral third party is the mediator, and that person does not represent either of the parties to the divorce. Rather, the mediator serves as a source of information to the parties to help steer them through the legal complexities they will encounter and help them come to party-driven solutions to their divorce-related disputes.
A prior post here discussed some of the advantages that individuals may experience when they opt to mediate their divorces. They may feel that they had more control over the outcomes of their legal matters and therefore may feel more confident that the process was fair. However, mediation is not for everyone and it should be considered carefully before a party agrees to the process.
If a person cannot get along with their spouse or feels as though their spouse presents a threat to them, then mediation may not be a sound option. Partners must work together to end their marriages and mediation cannot succeed if one partner is bullied by the other. In order to decide if mediation is an appropriate choice for a divorce, Massachusetts residents may wish to consult with an attorney who offers both litigated and mediated divorce services through their firm.