In Utah, courts prefer that family law issues are solved by mutual agreement. In fact, Utah law requires that divorcing couples participate in the mediation process at least once before accessing the state’s court system. Mediation is a fundamentally collaborative process that encourages compromise and mutual settlement. However, this does not mean that your rights or interests should take a back seat during a divorce mediation. If you are considering mediation for your divorce, it is critical that you have an experienced Alpine, Utah divorce lawyer by your side throughout the process.
The Advantages of Mediation for a Utah Divorce
Mediation offers many potential benefits in family law cases. The following is a list of five ways that mediation could help you in your Utah divorce case:
- Mediation is generally cost effective: on average it is much cheaper than going through a trial;
- Everything in a divorce mediation is fully confidential: there will never be a public record of the proceedings;
- Mediation is a fundamentally flexible process that is controlled by the wishes of the parties involved: this gives divorcing partners the ability to have more control over the process;
- Utah divorce mediation is generally voluntary: if you feel that your rights are not being protected, or that your wishes are not being respected, you can withdraw from the process and seek an alternative solution. You are not required to reach a final agreement in mediation; and
- You can always have a divorce lawyer by your side throughout the process: your lawyer can even do all of the speaking for you if you so desire.
How Does the Mediation Process Work?
Mediation for a Utah divorce will generally include both partners, their attorneys, and the mediator. The mediator is a neutral party whose primary purpose is to help move the divorcing partners to a mutual agreement. This process is as follows:
- The mediator will introduce herself to each party and provide a brief preview of the process. Most mediations occur with both parties and their attorney sitting in separate rooms and the mediator goes back and forth between the parties;
- Each party will be given the opportunity to talk to the mediator about the specific issues being address in mediation and their thoughts on a proposal;
- The mediator could and possibly will ask some specific questions;
- At times throughout the mediation the attorneys can choose to meet together to discuss an issue; and
- If the parties reach an agreement at mediation the attorney’s and/or mediator will type up a settlement agreement for both parties to review and sign. Once that document is signed it is a binding contract and can be deduced to an order.
The specific nature of the process will vary based on each individual case. Whenever progress is being made, the parties can keep working on that issue. When a roadblock arises, the direction of the process may be changed and the issue in question can be temporarily put aside. Ultimately, the goal is to reach a collaborative divorce settlement. However, settlement in mediation is not always possible. Your divorce lawyer will ensure that your interests are fully protected. If a settlement can not be reached, it is your right to remove yourself from the divorce mediation process and proceed with litigation.
Contact an Experienced Alpine Divorce Lawyer
Mediation can help divorcing couples resolve their issues in a collaborative manner. In some cases, mediation may the best method for you and your family. At Coil Law, LLC, our experienced team understands how sensitive family law issues can be and we work hard to find collaborative solutions for our clients. However, we are also prepared to fight aggressively to protect your rights and interests at every step of the process. Please do not hesitate to contact our Alpine divorce attorney today to schedule a fully confidential evaluation of your case.