Newton Mediation Lawyer

Mediation is often an excellent choice for divorcing couples who cannot agree on all the terms of their divorce but want to avoid the time and expense of litigation. With the right Newton mediation lawyer, couples can work through their disagreements in an orderly fashion. Where successful, mediation sets up men and women to successfully co-parent and move on from the divorce with a positive mindset.

Overview of Mediation

Just what is mediation? Some mediators describe it as “guided negotiation.” In the divorce context, spouses meet with the mediator, who serves as a third party neutral. A good mediator listens to each side and proposes solutions to disagreements. A seasoned Newton mediation lawyer, for example, can help couples see how to divide time with their children and/or divide marital property.

The mediator is neutral, which means his or her suggestions are only that—suggestions. No one can force any mediation participant to accept a solution they don’t want. However, good mediators can often help squabbling couples identify common sense solutions to many sticky disagreements.

Mediation often takes place in a big conference room, and each spouse can bring an attorney. However, the process is by no means adversarial. The mediator doesn’t choose which spouse is “right” or “wrong”—instead, the focus is on getting couples to find areas of agreement.

If mediation reaches an impasse, our clients each go to a separate room, in a process called “caucusing.” The mediator goes back and forth, trying to nudge each side to agreement. Caucusing often provides the final “push” necessary to get couples over the finish line.

At the end of the process, our Newton mediation lawyer will draft a separation agreement which contains the terms each side has agreed to. They should then submit this to a judge for approval.

Costs & Benefits of Mediation

Mediation is not free. A couple will choose a mediator who typically charges an hourly fee. The mediator also gives each side homework to complete to better understand areas of disagreement and what each side wants. The mediator might also call each side to ask questions. All of this work costs money.

However, the cost of mediation must be compared with the cost of divorce. Some couples can swiftly reach an agreement on a host of issues themselves:

  • Child custody
  • Child support
  • Alimony
  • Division of marital property and debts
  • The grounds for divorce
  • Tax issues

These couples can petition the courts for divorce and usually spend very little money.

Where couples cannot agree, however, the odds of extended litigation increase. Lawyers also charge by the hour, and it can take hundreds of hours to properly prepare a divorce for trial. In most cases, mediation saves clients time and money.

Choosing the Right Newton Mediation Lawyer

There are countless mediation lawyers to choose from in the Greater Boston area. How do you know you have picked the right one?

The ideal mediator should have substantial experience and skills in this area. The more mediations a lawyer has handled, the more he has seen what issues can arise to derail the process.

For example, we have seen mediations get off track due to a lack of information. A mediator can only propose helpful solutions if he knows all relevant information. Sometimes couples overlook something or hold something back out of embarrassment. In our experience, we sometimes need to suspend mediation until we obtain all necessary information.

A good mediator should also be an excellent listener and communicator. Not all lawyers are. Mediators must rely on compassion to make each side feel as if they have been heard.

Skilled mediators are also organized. Mediation can become unwieldy and spiral out of control, especially where emotions run high. A seasoned Newton mediation lawyer will keep everyone on track, always centering discussion on the issues at hand.

Risks with Mediation

There are no real risks with mediation. Since it is voluntary, no one can be forced to accept a resolution they disagree with. However, we should be upfront: mediation is not always successful. Some mediations break down for one reason or another and a couple will then have no choice but to litigate their dispute. This means they will need to pay for the costs of mediation in addition to the cost of litigation.

It often makes sense to try and mediate first. Even when a couple cannot reach agreement on all issues, they can often winnow down the ones in dispute. For example, you might reach agreement on child custody and child support but not on who gets the family home. The fewer issues you need to litigate, the better.

Contact Turco Legal, P.C. Today

The sooner couples begin mediation, the better their odds of a successful resolution to their disputes. Schedule a consultation with one of our Newton mediation lawyers by calling (978) 225-9030.

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