Family Law Mediation and Divorce

Family Law Mediation and Divorce

When Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin said they were undergoing a “conscious uncoupling,” many people thought that was crazy.  There is no such thing as a friendly divorce in which both people just move on, especially with children involved. This must be some type of Hollywood jargon! Yet, this type of friendlier divorce is not just for Hollywood types and it happens more often than you would imagine. The idea behind this is that two people still love each other, but they have grown apart and are no longer “in-love.” They know it is time to part ways, but they harbor no animosity and they still want to be a cohesive unit for their children so that they can effectively co-parent after the divorce.

The Logistics of Mediation

In Minnesota, mediation is a voluntary, non-binding process that allows parties to discuss impasse and contested issues during a divorce or family law case.  It’s confidential (with some exceptions) and in most cases, quite effective.  Mediation is not a viable option when domestic abuse has occurred or when the parties are unable to conduct themselves in a civil manner.  The role of a mediator is to help facilitate discussion between the parties.  A mediator is not a judge, and a mediator cannot provide legal advice or act as an advocate for either party.  Mediation is not arbitration, which is a binding process.  

The True Benefits of Mediation

Mediation is extremely beneficial to all involved when both parties chose to engage in civil and constructive dialogue.

Experienced family law mediators understand that the couple in front of them loved each other at one time, enough to marry and build a family.  A mediator can help the individuals come to an equitable agreement, with the assistance of legal counsel, by allowing them an opportunity to discuss complex issues  openly and honestly  In some cases the dynamic is similar to a therapy session   as well as a method for divorce, allowing grievances to be aired when they will help the outcome, but ultimately ending in a “conscious uncoupling.”

If you are looking to learn more about how mediation can be effectively used during a divorce or family law case, contact the Divorce and Family Law experts at Minneapolis-based Lake Harriet Law Office at 612-750-4843.

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