Why Consider Divorce Mediation and Other Alternatives to Court?
For individuals and families throughout Massachusetts, avoiding the downward spiral brought on by a court battle is clearly a smart approach.
Although most of our clients are getting divorced or desire to settle a post-divorce issue, mediation and other forms of alternative dispute resolution are used successfully for almost every type of legal matter.
Massachusetts Divorce & Family Law Cases:
Out of court options can help with issues such as:
- Divorce Mediation
- Developing a workable and supportive parenting plan;
- Finding solutions to support-related questions, such as child support and alimony;
- Working through the details of a fair property settlement, including retirement assets, real estate, and debts, whether your situation is complex or not;
- Understanding your budgetary needs, so you can make reasonable decisions;
- Providing medical insurance;
- Protecting income and financial needs through life insurance; and
- Tax Considerations
It is simple to list the most obvious benefits of out-of-court settlement options available in Massachusetts such as divorce mediation. After handling hundreds of Massachusetts divorces both as a divorce and family law attorney, a collaborative divorce lawyer, and as a divorce mediator, the most important benefits for our clients – especially parents – are not the most obvious.
Yes, you will save money in mediation over litigation, mediation takes much less time than the average court-based divorce, and is more private. The most valuable benefits are more nuanced, however.
When people act as enemy combatants, relationships suffer even more. This is especially troubling for parents that have years of interaction ahead. If you think getting along with your spouse or partner is tough now, wait until you experience the increased animosity fueled by the traditional adversarial approach. Imagine feeling regularly stressed and frustrated due to a poor relationship with your children’s other parent, how even a small request can flare into a nasty week-long battle through emails, texts, and in-person, and the money you will spend on legal fees for many years into the future. If your kids are in 2nd and 5th grade, does that sound like it is good for you or them?
On the other hand, most of our mediation clients learn to improve communications and adopt a more cooperative mind-set. They learn that it is possible to work through disagreements and understand the other person’s perspective. Couples that rarely compromised start to understand the benefits of problem-solving instead of dwelling on the past. There is less fear of the unknown as mediation clients have more input and control over what their new life will look like.
Whereas an adversarial process rips people and families further apart, alternatives such as mediation and collaborative divorce have the power to positively influence not just the adults involved, but their children. With the risk of sounding overly dramatic, adopting a process such as a divorce mediation or the collaborative divorce process can have a seriously positive impact on your life.
Other Types of Conflict (Non-divorce)
Besides our work on the divorce side, many other legal problems lend them themselves to alternative dispute resolution, including:
- Probate and Estate Administration
- Will Contests
- Elder Care
- Neighbor Conflict
- Real Estate Matters
- Consumer Claims
- Contract Disputes
- Construction and Contractor Cases
- Employment and Workplace Matters
- Education and School-Related Issues
- Insurance Claims
At Next Phase Legal of Norfolk, Massachusetts our two mediators (both attorneys) have experience with a wide variety of cases. Having the subject matter knowledge and helpful life experience adds to their effectiveness in helping craft solutions to your legal problems while saving you from the negatives of fighting things out in court.