One alternative to the litigated divorce is the mediated divorce. Mediation offers a neutral approach to handling your divorce and offers a more private, self-controlled, and usually more affordable means by which to handle your case.
In a mediated divorce, both parties usually work with a single, neutral, mediator. The mediator helps the parties reach an agreement. Mediated settlements are not imposed on parties by attorneys or judges, but rather are drafted by the parties themselves (the mediator does the typing, the parties dictate the language). In sum, you will not be handed a preformed, boilerplate, settlement that may be unacceptable – you will craft your own agreement in your own words. More important, because of the slower, more personable, more focused approach afforded by mediation, you will be able to address emotional and psychological issues that the court system simply cannot even begin to approach.
For example, Illinois law prohibits judges from considering “marital misconduct” in divorce cases. A mediated settlement, however, can accommodate apologies and amends and lay the groundwork for a stable, healthy, separated future. Studies show that settlement agreements reached through mediation are much more likely to be honored by both parties, to be modified when necessary without conflict, and to reduce future conflict than orders imposed by a judge.
Mediation offers a way for you and your spouse to control the divorce proceedings on your own terms and at your own pace. You are not bound by court dates or court orders. This can save a lot of time, money, and reduce the stress of either not being ready to go to court – or the opposite, wanting to proceed at a much quicker pace, but unable to because the court system is too busy and too slow.
If you or someone you know is facing a divorce, the importance of seeking professional legal assistance to determine your best course of action can’t be underestimated. Don’t go through it alone. Contact a dedicated Chicago area divorce attorney today.