Choosing to end a marriage is a difficult decision by itself, so going through the divorce process should be as stress-free as possible. It is always best for a couple to agree to the terms of the divorce on their own, but if the two people cannot discuss things without arguing, then a mediation session is the next best thing.
When going through the court system, the couple getting the divorce have less control over the splitting of assets, allocation of parental responsibilities, and business control because the court will make the decisions. In mediation, the couple is in control so long as they can find a resolution that both can agree on and be happy to accept.
What Is Mediation?
The state of Illinois utilizes the Uniform Mediation Act which says that “mediation” is a discussion between both parties involved in a divorce—or other legal case—and a third-party, unbiased person who is called a “mediator.” This person’s job is to make sure a couple remain civil during the discussion of all aspects of a divorce.
A mediation discussion is private between the parties involved and a mediator is not allowed to disclose the information discussed unless granted so by the couple. The information discussed in a mediation also cannot be used as evidence if the couple have to go to court.
If a couple cannot agree to the terms of a divorce through mediation, then the next step is to go to family court where a judge will take the responsibility of decision-making for all aspects of the divorce.
Mediation vs. Family Court
There are pros and cons to every situation when it comes to divorce. In the debate between mediation and court, most couples would agree that mediation is the better course because both parties have more freedom to their decisions in mediation. Other benefits that mediation has over family court are:
- Mediation usually costs less than going to court. Each party would need a lawyer to represent them in court and there are fees that go along with court that can accumulate quickly;
- The discussion promotes good communication behavior between a couple who is about to separate. This will lead to better interactions after the process is complete;
- Court cases are public record while in mediation, a couple is guaranteed more privacy; and
- Couples can start to practice good co-parenting behaviors if there are children involved in the divorce.
- Of course, for spouses who cannot stand be in the same room as one another, family court could be the better route if they know they will not be able to come to a civil agreement in mediation.
Contact a St. Charles Mediation Attorney
Whether you are going through a mediation or headed to family court, a lawyer from Weiler & Lengle P.C. can help you through your divorce process. To schedule an appointment with a Kane County divorce mediaton attorney, call 630-382-8050.