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Seven Tips to Make New Jersey Divorce Mediation as Productive as Possible

In many New Jersey marriage dissolution cases, the parties will either agree to divorce mediation or be directed to participate in it by the judge. In this article, we provide you with seven tips to make a New Jersey divorce mediation as productive as possible:

  • Understand and establish your mediation priorities and goals
  • Do your homework
  • Create a New Jersey divorce mediation checklist
  • Prepare to compromise
  • Keep emotions in check
  • Keep an open mind
  • Prepare for more than one mediation session
What is a New Jersey Divorce Mediation

Before considering specific tips and tactics to make a divorce mediation productive, we provide you with a definition of this type of alternative dispute resolution used in New Jersey marriage dissolution case. Divorce mediation is defined as an alternative dispute resolution process that allows divorcing couples to try and negotiate a mutually acceptable settlement of their case. This is undertaken with the help of a neutral mediator. A mediator does not have the authority to make decisions. Rather, a mediator assists a couple in reaching a settled resolution of their divorce case.

Understand and Establish Your Mediation Priorities and Goals

An important tip to make your divorce mediation as productive as possible is to be sure to set your priorities and goals before the process begins. In this regard, you should identify goals that are most important to you, things that you really cannot negotiate away. You also need to identify elements of your case that you are more flexible about, aspects of your divorce that you are willing to negotiate (perhaps even concede altogether).

Do Your Homework

In order to enhance the prospects for mediation success is to do your homework. For example, you need to know what assets you and your spouse accumulated during the marriage. That includes everything from the balance of financial accounts and the value of your home (if you own a residence). If you are represented by a lawyer (and you are best served by retaining a lawyer when you are divorcing), your New Jersey divorce lawyer can assist you in preparing for mediation.

Create a New Jersey Divorce Mediation Checklist

Prior to the date of your session with a mediator, create a mediation checklist. The checklist needs to include the matters you believe need to be addressed during the mediation process. You should also include any questions that you might have for the mediator.

Prepare to Compromise

At the heart of mediation is negotiation. The ultimate objective of mediation is to reach a settlement of your divorce case. If mediation is slated to more broadly consider any outstanding issues in your divorce case, the goal would be settling these issues. However, even if you are able to settle some but not all outstanding issues, that is progress.

Keep Emotions in Check

A divorce mediation is more likely to succeed if you and your spouse are able to keep your emotions in check as much as possible. If you feel as if your emotions are starting to build, ask the mediator to take a break. Take some time to try and collect yourself before proceeding further with the mediation.

Keep an Open Mind

Do not enter into a mediation with a closed mind. Yes, you certainly can identify some issues that you are not particularly interested in moving away from your current position. However, all issues are not in the same category when a divorce case is viewed honestly. Listen to what your spouse has to say. Listen to what the mediator has to say. Make it a point to be at least be willing to consider what is being said during the mediation process.

Prepare for More than One Mediation Session

In many instances, a mediation can be completed in one session. However, that definitely is not always the case. While one mediation session may be scheduled at the start of the process, do not be alarmed or angry if a subsequent mediation session is deemed necessary.

In the final analysis, by applying these tips and tactics, you really do enhance the prospect for successful mediation. A successful mediation has the potential for bringing your divorce case to a quicker conclusion than would happen in the absence of this process. If you are interested in mediation, call us today at (201) 845-7400 for a free consultation.

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