Divorce mediation is a constructive and less adversarial approach to resolving the issues surrounding divorce. It empowers couples to make decisions about their future together, especially when it comes to dividing assets, arranging child custody and determining support payments.
Still, some people may worry about the fairness of the process. After all, the American Sociological Association reported women file first in 69% of divorces. This could give them the upper hand since they had a chance to prepare for it.
Fortunately, the process is inherently fair, and there are also some strategies individuals can use to achieve a satisfactory and equitable outcome.
Open and honest communication
Fairness in divorce mediation begins with open and honest communication between the spouses. Both parties must be willing to share their concerns, needs and priorities. It is essential to maintain a respectful and transparent dialogue throughout the process.
Selecting a neutral mediator is also an important point. The mediator’s role is to facilitate the conversation and ensure that both parties have an equal opportunity to voice their perspectives. They should remain impartial and not take sides, allowing for an unbiased resolution.
Each spouse must provide full financial disclosure. This means honestly and accurately reporting all assets, liabilities, income and expenses. Withholding information or being dishonest can lead to an unfair settlement and may undermine trust in the mediation process.
Both parties should have an equal say in the decisions made during mediation. The mediator should ensure that one party does not dominate the conversation or decision-making process. Each spouse’s concerns and preferences require due consideration.
Flexibility and compromise
Fairness often requires some degree of flexibility and compromise from both spouses. While a person should advocate for their interests, being overly rigid can hinder the mediation process. Parties should be willing to find middle ground when necessary.
When parties reach an agreement, they should document it in a clear and comprehensive manner. This documentation serves as a legally binding contract and helps prevent future disputes.