Mediation is a voluntary process. You and your spouse decide if mediation is an avenue you wish to pursue. You decide which issues you wish to mediate and how long you wish to spend in mediation. Mediation can be a much more productive and much less adversarial approach to divorce settlement. It is wise to pursue this avenue prior to attending court, as it is much less draining (emotionally, financially, mentally).
Mediation is confidential. That means that any discussions held in mediation cannot be used in court. For this reason, mediation can often be very beneficial because it allows you to hold discussions much more freely and openly than when in court, and not be afraid that anything will be used against you in the legal system. This can often lead to more meaningful discussions, allowing you to resolve issues more effectively.
Mediation offers more flexibility than the family court process. You have more control over the outcome of your divorce. You can craft creative solutions that fit your family’s needs and circumstances rather than having a judge decide what happens. Mediation can offer your family the ability to identify resolutions to your divorce where everyone is happier than with an outcome forced upon you in court.
Separation/divorce is a very stressful and emotional process. It is a time that is filled with uncertainty, heartache, fear, sadness, anxiety, anger and many other emotions. The impact to your children, your lifestyle, your financial health and your emotional health are just a few of the areas that will need to be addressed as you navigate through this very stressful time in your life. A mediator can help reduce the stress of trying to resolve some of the major issues that arise as a result of a separation/divorce.
Unfortunately, over 40% of Canadian marriages will end in divorce and the court system is severely backlogged. This means that if you choose to navigate through the legal system to resolve your divorce, you could end up stuck in a stressful and draining process (emotionally, mentally and financially) for years. A legal battle in court could cost well over $100,000 dollars in legal fees. Imagine the impact on your children and your own well-being. More and more, people are turning to mediation (and courts are encouraging people to attend mediation) in order to speed up the resolution process and reduce the toll the divorce process takes on the family (emotionally and financially).
A mediator acts as a neutral third party who can help you through the negotiation process, when emotions are running high. Compared to the adversarial court process, mediation is a more constructive, collaborative, affordable and efficient approach to divorce settlement. It allows you to identify unique solutions that address your individual family needs and requirements, at a fraction of the cost that you might otherwise pay. It helps you avoid having a decision forced upon your family by a judge. In mediation, you make the decisions and you control how much time you spend in mediation. Unlike the cost of lawyers, the costs of mediation are split between the parties, making it much more affordable.
At a time when your life feels like it has been turned upside down, mediation may offer you a more supportive environment, that helps you address a number of your interests in a positive, calm, less stressful manner, in a fraction of the time and cost that it might take in a court setting.
Here is what you can expect from the mediation process:
1. Intake Form
Each of the parties will complete a mediation intake form (contact us below to obtain the form).
2. Intake Meeting
After reviewing your intake form, we will meet separately with each party. During this meeting, you will have the opportunity to identify your concerns and issues to be addressed and we will determine if mediation is the right process for you.
3. Mediation Sessions
We will meet with both parties to mediate the issues you have identified. You are in control of which issues are mediated and how long you spend in mediation.
4. Memorandum of Understanding/Mediation Report
We will provide a Memorandum of Understanding (Mediation Report), which outlines what was agreed to in the mediation session(s).
5. Independent Legal Advice
You will obtain Independent Legal Advice regarding the Memorandum of Understanding (Mediation Report) and your agreement will be turned into a formal court order.
6. You are done!
Move forward with your life, in peace, satisfied with the knowledge that your divorce is resolved.
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