Divorce Mediation in Georgia
Divorce mediation is a process that offers the opportunity for a low-conflict and cost-saving path to obtain a non-contested divorce.
What is Divorce Mediation?
Divorce mediation is a term for a divorce process that enables divorcing couples to utilize a trained intermediary to facilitate amicable discussions to develop the divorce Settlement Agreement. If you and your spouse can generally communicate in a civil manner, mediated divorce may be a good option for you.
Top 3 Reasons for Mediated Divorce
If you and your spouse can work amicably both of you will benefit from a mediated divorce. Family law attorney Carmina Tessitore, writing for Rocket Lawyer,put forth the following, "The goal of mediation is to reach an agreement that works for your life—without spending your children’s college fund on costs and attorney fees, or spend significant time and stress in court.".1 To those points, we offer the following three reasons you should hire a Cherokee County divorce mediator:
Save Money. It gets to be expensive when a divorcing couple each hire an attorney to argue on their behalf. Is it worth $1,000 dollars to argue over something like a $700 dining room table and chairs? Hire a mediator to help both of you to sort out the details for yor Settlement. With this done, each of you can hire a lawyer to simply review the proposed Settlement. From there, it should sail through the court. The money you save will help you to establish your new life.
Low Stress. Almost anyone who has been through a divorce can tell you stories about stress, aggravation and anger. Sometimes, even a simple call from your lawyer can cause stress before you even know what’s going on. With a mediator you know there are no games being played. Whatever a mediator brings to you is done in good faith.
Better Privacy. Mediation keeps the details of your divorce out of a public courtroom. Obviously, a contested divorce is going to put your marriage and divorce battle on public display. An uncontested divorce can have high-conflict points that drive the matter to a public courtroom for a judge to settle. Mediation offers privacy to both parties throughout the entire process.
How Long Does Divorce Mediation Take?
Any questions on how long it takes to get a divorce can be answered with, "It depends". When comparing contested, uncotested with opposing lawyers, and mediated divorce, the latter is almost always the shortest route to completion. The primary reason is you have one central point, the mediator, who has all of the facts. This mitigates problems from days of waiting for a response and protracted arguments.
In the best situations, a divorcing couple has reached agreement on most items and needs help resolving only a few issues. A mediator, not in the position of fighting for only one side, can be objective and balanced.
When a couple has agreed to divorce, and agreed to be civil, a mediated divorce may take only 5-10 joint meetings. This can easily be only 30-50% of the time you might expect if you endured litigation when hiring uncontested divorce attorneys in Georgia.
The Mediated Divorce Process
A divorce mediator facilitates open and productive conversation concerning the various topics that will be included in your Settlement Agreement. A divorce mediator works with you and your spouse somewhat like a marriage counselor. The primary difference is that a mediator works with divorce related issues whereas a counselor works with cognitive and behavioral matters.
Generally, you and your spouse will have an initial meeting with the mediator to establish a starting point. The mediator can manage the process using phone calls, emails, text messages and meetings. You should find that informal messaging can quickly move you through minor points. Meetings with the mediator can be scheduled whenever you or your spouse believes it is necessary. There are no set timelines or frequencies other than what you set.
Emily Doskow, a contributing attorney for DivorceNet.com, stated, "Most mediations go through a series of five stages—not necessarily in this order, and some of them may be repeated at various points during the mediation. Your own mediation may be different…"2. She identied the stages as Introductory, Information Gathering, Framing, Negotiating, and Concluding.
The Cost of Mediated Divorce
The cost of a divorce in Georgia can be staggering. A seemingly simple uncontested divorce without children can easily cost each person over $4,000. Factoring in children, a high net worth, and real property can easily push that number to a five or even six-fugure amount. In fact, the Lawyers.com website published survey information on the cost of divorce in Georgia. Per the Lawyers.com article, "According to our survey, the average divorce in Georgia costs $14,700, including $11,600 in attorneys’ fees. Attorneys’ fees are a significant chunk of the cost of divorce because the average hourly rate for attorneys in Georgia is $280.".3
Mediation can save you thousands of dollars! Imagine getting a low-stress divorce and not losing a lot of money on legal fees. With the help and guidance of a divorce mediator in Georgia you can get a divorce faster and for a lower cost than typical litigation. Add to that, your children endure less stress and your future won’t be defined by a judge’s ruling.
If divorce mediation is of interest to you, simply get in touch with us to learn more.
- 1 Carmina K. Tessitore, "5 Tips to prepare for divorce mediation", September 23, 2013, Available from LINK SOURCE
- 2 Emily Doskow, "The Stages of Divorce Mediation", March 31, 2017, Available from DivorceNet.com
- 3 Lawyers.com, "How Much Does Divorce Cost in Georgia?", 2019, Available from Lawyers.com