03 Nov Divorce Mediation: 3 Good Reasons to have a Lawyer Present
When two people decide to get a divorce, they can opt for mediation in order to attempt to resolve their issues, rather than going straight to a full-blown trial. Mediation is a perfect option for a couple who are divorcing amicably but may have one or two minor issues that are yet to be resolved. Even though the parties who are divorcing will not be entering a courtroom, it is still advisable to have a lawyer help them through the process. Below are three reasons why hiring a lawyer for divorce mediation is a good idea.
A lawyer can make sure an agreement is legally binding
The purpose of mediation is to help people through their divorce or without submitting the issue directly to a judge. A lawyer can help you make sure the process goes smoothly and that that the entire process is completed within the parameters of the law. Mediation lawyers are, of course, well-versed in the rules of mediation and the divorce laws that must be followed. During the mediation process, a lawyer can assist you in many ways. One of the most important functions a lawyer will serve during mediation is to advise you during the negotiation, expressing your thoughts, feelings, and advocate in your interest, while remaining within the parameters of Florida law.
A lawyer can help you file an agreement with the court
A couple who is dissolving their marriage, even though they are going through the mediation process must still petition the family court for a divorce. The divorce agreement is the official document that states the agreed-upon issues pertaining to the divorce. Divorce agreements often include information regarding child custody, child support payments, spousal support payments, the division of property, and any other required information that is pertinent to both parties. All of the information indicated in the divorce agreement is legally binding and must be followed precisely by both parties. Therefore, it is crucial that the information is accurate, clear, and completely understood and agreed upon by both parties. Having a lawyer present during your mediation can help to assure you that you both understand what you are agreeing to and that the agreement is equitable. This is of particular importance if the other party involved in the split drafted the agreement or had an attorney do so on his or her behalf. Your lawyer should also review the contract before you sign it to make sure everything is in proper order. Once the final agreement is drafted, your lawyer can help you file it with your local courthouse.
A lawyer can help you prepare a case if mediation fails
Even the most amicable of divorces can turn nasty quickly. It is also possible that the mediation process can fail, even if they remain friendly. Therefore, it is important to have legal representation in the event that the mediation goes south, and you are unable to reach a divorce agreement with your soon-to-be former spouse. When it appears the mediation is stalling, the next step is to go to court and have a judge make the final decision. Although it is permitted to go through this process without the assistance of legal representation, it is ill-advised. If you have a lawyer helping you through the mediation process, the same lawyer can then begin drafting your divorce case. This is beneficial because your mediation lawyer will already know the details of your case and will be able to start developing your case immediately. If you do not have a lawyer at your mediation, and it fails, you will have to hire a lawyer at that point and start from scratch. This situation can delay the process of your divorce by months. It is far better to be prepared with a divorce lawyer from the outset.
Mediation is an excellent option for couples who have agreed to part ways in a civil manner. However, it is to the benefit of all the parties involved to have a mediation lawyer help you through the process. A mediation lawyer has the knowledge, expertise, and experience to make sure you are treated in a fair and equitable manner throughout the mediation process. If you are contemplating a dissolution of your marriage and would like to go through the mediation process, contact a divorce lawyer as soon as possible. It might be the best decision you make.