How to Prepare for Mediation During Your Divorce

DuPage County, IL divorce mediation attorneyIf you are planning to get a divorce, you may be worried that conflict with your spouse could lead to a long, drawn-out, expensive process as you work to resolve issues related to your finances, your children, and other aspects of your marriage. However, if you are looking to complete your divorce expeditiously and efficiently while minimizing conflict, mediation may be the best approach.

During mediation, you and your spouse can work together to resolve divorce-related issues amicably with the help of a neutral third party. As you prepare for mediation, it is helpful to understand what you can do to protect your interests and ensure that you will be able to resolve issues successfully. An experienced attorney can help you navigate this process and ensure that you will be able to negotiate a settlement that meets your needs.

Understanding the Issues Addressed During Mediation

As you and your spouse work to create a divorce settlement during mediation, you may need to address matters such as:

  • Property division: A full disclosure of all assets and debts must be provided by both spouses to ensure that your marital property can be divided fairly and equitably. You may need to make decisions about your family home, including whether it will be sold or if one spouse will retain ownership. Other types of assets may also need to be addressed, including vehicles, household items, retirement accounts, and business interests.
  • Child custody and parenting time: You will need to establish a parenting plan that outlines how you and your spouse will work together to raise your children and when each parent will spend time with the children.
  • Child support: Financial support obligations will need to be calculated for both parents based on the needs of your children and your respective incomes. You may also need to determine how various expenses will be shared, including medical and educational costs.
  • Spousal support (alimony): If either you or your spouse will be at a financial disadvantage following your divorce, ongoing support payments may be appropriate. During mediation, you may determine whether spousal support will be necessary and, if so, the amount and duration of payments.

Steps to Encourage Productive Discussions During Mediation

Preparing for mediation involves more than just understanding the issues at hand. You also want to make sure that you will be able to discuss these issues openly, find compromises when necessary, and determine what solutions work for both you and your spouse. To ensure that you will be able to address divorce-related issues clearly and advocate for solutions that meet your needs, you can:

  • Gather necessary documentation: Having the right information about the financial aspects of your divorce can ensure that you will be able to address issues related to property division and financial support. Collect all relevant financial documents, including bank statements, tax returns, pay stubs, and property appraisals.
  • Identify your goals: It is a good idea to determine what issues are most important to you and where you may be willing to compromise. This can help you determine what to focus on while avoiding conflicts in areas that are less important to you. Be prepared to listen to your spouse’s concerns and consider alternative solutions when necessary.
  • Consider your children’s best interests: Keep your children’s needs and well-being at the forefront of your discussions. Gather documentation related to your children’s schedules, as well as school records and medical information. You and your spouse can work together to develop a parenting plan that supports a stable and nurturing environment for your children.
  • Communicate effectively: Be prepared to practice active listening to understand your spouse’s perspective fully. Do your best to maintain a respectful and calm demeanor, even when discussing contentious issues.
  • Stay open-minded: Be willing to compromise and make concessions to reach mutually acceptable agreements. If you and your spouse can focus on finding practical solutions rather than dwelling on past grievances, you will be more likely to create a settlement that allows you to move forward successfully once your divorce has been finalized.
  • Seek professional guidance: Even though mediation sessions will typically only involve you, your spouse, and the mediator, you can consult with your divorce attorney beforehand or during mediation to ensure you fully understand the issues that you are discussing. Your lawyer will advise you of your rights and obligations and provide guidance on how certain issues may be resolved.

Contact Our DuPage County, IL Divorce Mediation Attorneys

At Mirabella, Kincaid, Frederick & Mirabella, LLC., we provide mediation services, working with divorcing spouses to resolve tough problems so they can dissolve their marriages successfully. Our Wheaton, IL divorce lawyers also provide representation for spouses during divorce mediation and other negotiations. Contact our firm to schedule an initial attorney meeting and get the legal representation you need at 630-665-7300.

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From our law office in Wheaton, IL the family law and civil litigation law attorneys of Mirabella, Kincaid, Frederick and Mirabella, represent businesses and individual clients throughout the western suburbs of Chicago, Illinois including Wheaton, Naperville, Oak Brook, Glen Ellyn, Carol Stream, Lombard, Downers Grove, Burr Ridge, Lisle, Elmhurst, Oakbrook Terrace, Winfield, Woodridge, Warrenville and throughout DuPage, Kane and Kendall Counties.

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In honor of the passing of our founder, Joseph F. Mirabella, Jr., our offices are closed Friday, January 31, 2020.I Agree