OK, you have decided to try divorce mediation because you have read that it is civilized, relatively quick, far less expensive than litigation and addresses individual and common needs of you and your family.
The Best Divorce Mediators would agree that the following tips can make for a productive and successful mediation.
1.DO interview your mediators to learn their process and see if the mediator's personality and qualifications are a good fit.
2.DO trust your mediators as to their process. Generally, a structured process/system to move through the mediation increases efficiency, saves money and keeps the participants engaged in the present and future topics to be covered.
3.DO be honest and tell the "whole" truth whether it relates to your personal life, finances or your employment. The mediation room is a safe place, taking part in mediation is voluntary and what is said is confidential.
4.DO make sure to identify common goals with the mediators at the outset. This gives the mediators a place to go if there are different opinions on a topic.
5.DO educate yourself either via DIY methods, reading materials suggested by the mediators, or speaking with the most appropriate professional before, during or after the mediation.
1.DON'T begin divorce mediation if you have not accepted the fact that your divorce is imminent. This is not a platform to save your marriage. Instead try a marriage therapist.
2.DON'T use mediation as a delay tactic, a fact finding mission only or a chance to rearrange your finances to your advantage. This tactic usually ends up in litigation for large money with similar outcome as mediation.
3.DON'T play the mediators or your spouse. Divorce attorneys are generally very skilled attorneys who have legal and people knowledge. They can read a liar quickly. It may be your first divorce but they have seen hundreds if not thousands.
4.DON'T go for a win/lose situation. If that is your goal you are in the wrong place. Mediators will work toward meeting your common goals and drafting an agreement likely to be approved by the court. However, an agreed upon but uneven agreement many times turns into a litigated modification as it was doomed to failure from the beginning.
5.DON'T speed up the process to save a few bucks. Mediation is far less expensive than litigation in most cases. Let it unfold and don't get ahead of yourself. If your mediator has a somewhat flat fee and has given you an estimate of number of sessions, let them do their job.