Deciding Whether Mediation is Right for Your Virginia Divorce

“Mediation” and “divorce” may at first seem like contradictory concepts to those entering into the divorce process in Virginia – after all, if two people cannot find a way to stay together, how are they going to be able to work out the complex issues of their divorce together?

But more and more divorcing couples in Virginia and elsewhere are indeed finding that mediation is the most mutually beneficial way to approach the thorny issues of divorce, and that an experienced Virginia divorce mediator can guide both of them to the next chapter of their lives in a way that maximizes security and stability while reducing unnecessary costs, delay, and acrimony.

That said, mediation may not be for everyone, and it is worth asking the question of whether mediation is indeed the right way to approach your Virginia divorce matter.

A Willingness to Work Together is the Most Important Factor

Divorce mediation is a process by which a mediator works with both spouses to help guide them to a settlement agreement on any and all issues which may be contentious in their divorce. This includes division of marital property, alimony (spousal support), child support, child custody and visitation, and any other issues.

The goal of a divorce mediation is to create this settlement agreement which will then be submitted to the Virginia court overseeing the divorce so that the judge can approve the agreement and finalize the divorce. Thus, in mediation it is the spouses themselves who are working together to decide how all of these issues should be worked out; mediation places decision-making authority in the hands of the spouses and not the judge nor the mediator.

Thus, a willingness to work together is the critical factor in deciding whether mediation is a promising method to resolve your divorce. You do not have to be in agreement or all things or anything at the start; if you were already in agreement on all things, you wouldn’t need the services of mediation in the first place.

Considering the Alternatives to Mediation

Sometimes the willingness to work together, however, is not quite there at the outset, especially where there are emotional wounds attached to the relationship. But the alternatives to mediation generally come down to: 1) remaining in the marriage without achieving a legal dissolution to the marriage; or 2) having to litigate these matters before a Virginia judge in what could be a messy, expensive, and long process.

In light of those options, many couples decide that – despite their differences – working to overcome them through mediation is a more promising prospect.

Overcoming Obstacles Through Your Virginia Mediation

You may have a number of misgivings about the thought of sitting with your soon-to-be ex-spouse in the same room and talking about your issues with a third party, which is only natural, but an experienced Virginia divorce mediator can help you overcome a wide variety of obstacles to get you on the road to an amicable agreement, through such strategies as:

  • Providing a neutral explanation of how a Virginia court might address legal issues in the divorce to help avoid needless litigation
  • Providing creative problem-solving strategies that help the spouses to think of new arrangements and solutions
  • Clarifying what your priorities in your divorce to help you focus on big-picture issues and not get caught up in issues of little long-term importance
  • Keeping the discussions on track to steer you towards resolution with minimal delay and cost

Schedule a Consultation With a Virginia Family Law Attorney Today

At Kurylo Gold & Josey, PLC in Fredericksburg, we will guide through all of your questions regarding all aspects of your divorce and help you work towards a favorable outcome in your family law matter. To schedule a consultation with one of our Virginia family law attorneys to determine whether mediation is a viable option for resolving your Virginia divorce, contact Select Law Partners at 540.642.1766.

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Matt Kurylo

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