How to Select a Divorce Mediator
Over the course of the past decade, divorce mediation has become more commonplace in New Jersey marriage dissolution cases. There are a number of important benefits that have been identified with divorce mediation:
- Lower the cost of divorce proceedings
- Speed up the divorce process itself
- Permit a more civil resolution of difference between parties
If you are thinking about mediation in your marriage dissolution case, there are some key factors to consider in selecting a divorce mediator:
- Experience of mediator
- Recommendations from others
- Court identified mediators
- Comfort level with a mediator
- Schedule and availability of a divorce mediator
Before diving deeper into what to look for when selecting a mediator, it is important for you to have at least a basic understanding of the mediation process. Mediation is a form of alternative dispute resolution utilized in New Jersey marriage dissolution cases.
A mediator is a trained, experienced professional who oversees the mediation process. A mediation does not make decisions for a divorcing couple in the manner of a judge in such a case. Rather, the role of a mediator is to aid a divorcing couple in settling outstanding issues in a marriage dissolution case.
If a couple is able to settle outstanding issues via mediation, a mediator then drafts what is known as a mediation agreement. A mediation agreement sets for the terms and conditions of the settlement reached in regard to issues in a divorce case. A mediation agreement is then submitted to the court for approval and incorporation into a divorce decree.Experience of Mediator
As is the case with any type of professional, when it comes to selecting a mediator in a divorce case, experience is crucial. In this regard, you not only want to ensure that you utilize the services of a mediator with experience in the divorce arena more generally, you want to select such a professional that is adept at working with the types of issues you face in your individual case. For example, if you and the other party are facing roadblocks in regard to child custody and parenting time matters, you certainly want to utilize the services of a mediator that has demonstrable experience in working with people facing these types of issues.Recommendations From Others
When selecting a marriage dissolution mediator, seek out recommendations from family, friends, and other colleagues who have been through divorces and have used the services of these types of alternative dispute resolution professionals. Even in this digital age, the reality is that word of mouth recommendations from people whose opinions you trust can be invaluable. This definitely applies when it comes to selection of a competent, capable marriage dissolution mediator.Court Identified Mediators
A standard practice throughout the state of New Jersey is for courts to maintain listings of mediators that provide services in divorce proceedings. At a minimum, these lists designate mediators that have experience in divorce cases and have satisfied certain minimum background requirements that a court or judge deems appropriate and necessary to effectively provide vital alternative dispute resolution services for people involved in marriage dissolution cases.Schedule and Availability of a Divorce Mediator
In seeking out the services of a mediator, you also need to ensure that a potential service provider of this type has a schedule that permits the ability to mediate in your case in a timeframe that works for you. Mediators typically are quite open about their availability and their schedule when working with divorcing couples seeking their professional assistance.Guarding Your Legal Rights in a New Jersey Divorce Case
Another key fact to bear in mind when it comes to selecting a divorce mediator is that this professional and the mediation process itself does not take the place of legal counsel. In the final analysis, with or without mediation, you best protect your important legal rights in a marriage dissolution case by retaining the services of an experienced New Jersey divorce lawyer. You can schedule an appointment with a committed, capable, and tenacious divorce attorney/mediator at your convenience by contacting the Law Offices of Peter Van Aulen at 201-845-7400.