What’s the Difference Between Mediation and Collaborative Divorce?

benefits of a mediator

Did you know divorce mediation produces an agreement in 50% to 80% of cases? When possible, mediation is an excellent option for couples divorcing, and most courts require divorcing couples to go to mediation before setting a case for trial. However, it’s not the only option.

Another option is a collaborative divorce. There are many benefits of using a mediator or choosing a collaborative divorce process. However, one might suit your situation better than the other.

Keep reading to learn more about divorce mediation and collaborative divorce.

What Is Mediation? 

Mediation is a confidential, voluntary out of court settlement process. Here, a neutral third party, known as a mediator, helps couples negotiate the disputed issues in their divorce proceedings.

Mediation is different from traditional litigation in that the mediator helps the divorcing couple reach agreements, so they may avoid going to court and letting a judge decide the outcome for them. Instead, the mediator helps the divorcing couple find solutions they both agree on.

Benefits of a Mediator 

When it comes to resolving conflicts and reaching agreements, mediation offers several advantages. It provides neutral ground for all parties involved. Individuals can openly share their concerns and interests with a mediator trained to listen without judgment or bias. This facilitates productive discussions and increases the likelihood of finding mutually beneficial solutions.

Mediation is also more cost-effective than traditional litigation. In mediation, parties pay for the mediator to help them reach agreements which may then be drawn up and entered with the court, instead of paying expensive legal costs and court fees to fight things out in court.

What Is a Collaborative Divorce? 

Collaborative divorce is based on the idea that couples can separate in a friendlier and more cooperative way. In collaborative divorce, both spouses are represented by specially trained collaborative attorneys who work together with the couple with the assistance of coaches to solve their problems. They talk openly to address their respective concerns and objections to find solutions that work for the divorcing couple.

Both parties in a collaborative divorce must commit to working together respectfully and honestly. If one spouse chooses to go to court, all professionals working together must leave the case. This creates an incentive for cooperation.

Advantages of Collaborative Divorce

In a traditional divorce, a judge decides. Collaborative divorce lets couples work together with their collaborative divorce professional to make decisions for themselves.

Collaborative divorce has another benefit: it helps spouses communicate openly and cooperate with each other. Couples can talk about their concerns, needs, and desires in a supportive environment by meeting with their lawyers together. This helps foster understanding and empathy, which can lead to more amicable resolutions.

Key Differences Between Mediation and Collaborative Divorce

When resolving legal disputes, mediation and collaborative divorce offer distinct approaches. In mediation, a neutral third party assists the couple in reaching a mutually acceptable agreement. However, in a collaborative divorce, each spouse hires a collaboratively-trained attorney to advise and work together with them in interest-based negotiations.

During mediation, the mediator helps the parties talk and find agreement. The focus is on finding solutions that meet both parties’ needs.

In contrast, collaborative divorce involves a team approach. The process may involve professionals like financial advisors or child specialists to guide it, depending on the issues needing to be resolved. This comprehensive support ensures that all aspects of the divorce are addressed effectively.

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Are you looking into an alternative dispute resolution for your divorce? The benefits of a mediator and a collaborative divorce are significant. However, you still need the right divorce attorney on your side. We’re here to help you find a resolution and be your advocate. Call (918) 582-1211 to schedule a mediation session with one of our family and divorce mediators or schedule a consultation with us for a collaborative divorce process for your case today.