Amicable divorce is often described as two people who reach an amicable agreement about their divorce peacefully. Such an agreement is described as a mediated divorce. Divorce mediation is a process in which two or more individuals involved in a divorce mediation process communicate with each other through a neutral third party, such as a divorce mediator. A divorce mediator may help the parties negotiate amicable solutions for their divorce by providing them with advice regarding relevant divorce laws, financial issues, child custody and visitation, and other issues.
In some instances, divorce mediation may also lead to a quicker amicable divorce, especially when both parties are well versed with their situation and are ready to submit facts and documents to the other party for evaluation and possible approval. In other instances, however, mediation may lead to a prolonged litigation process in which case a divorce mediation may not prove useful at all or may even result in the prolonging of the litigation process. Both parties need to be well-informed about the legal issues surrounding their divorce, particularly laws regarding jurisdiction, spousal support, child custody, and the division of assets and liabilities. The litigation process itself can be time consuming, frustrating, costly, and emotionally draining. A divorce mediator helps couples, especially those who are struggling with complex divorce issues, to better understand the litigation process and to obtain a resolution to their divorce that meets their needs and priorities best.
The role of the divorce mediator depends on the extent of the issues. If there are only a couple of issues to resolve, the spouses can decide to use the services of a neutral third party to mediate those issues. In this instance, the mediator will act as an intermediary and assist both spouses in discussing their specific issues in an orderly fashion. However, if a more extensive list of issues is at stake, the divorce mediator may have to take on more responsibility and act as a referee in order to mediate the discussions. In this instance, the mediator must act as an impartial party who assists both spouses in negotiating a divorce agreement that is in the best interests of all involved.
In most instances where the divorce process requires the involvement of the marital bed, the marriage counselor is usually involved in the mediation process. Marriage counselors are licensed professionals who assist spouses in negotiating an amicable divorce agreement. Depending on the particular issues involved, they may also be called upon to assist the parties in evaluating their individual position and potentials for rearing children. A good marriage counselor will always keep both parties apprised of proceedings at every step of the way including the actual commencement of the mediation. This allows both spouses the opportunity to have an active role during the mediation process, which ensures the process is a peaceful one.
If the parties involved cannot agree on terms of divorce, the divorce courts will likely recommend that a judge make a decision. Divorce hearings will only occur if the divorce agreement is found to be valid and reasonable. The process is not for the benefit of one spouse, but rather one that is for the benefit of the other spouse. If the decision is awarded to one spouse, the other spouse must accept it graciously and not try to persuade the court to reverse the decision. It is important to remember that the goal of an amicable divorce process is to attain a just and fair resolution of the differences between the two spouses, and should not be used to further hurt one spouse or the other in hopes of scoring a favor with the court.
Another option available to spouses when working toward a successful settlement is an amicable divorce that does not require a judge’s intervention. There are many couples who opt for this kind of settlement because it allows them the ability to reach an agreement between themselves regarding key issues without having to go to court. An amicable divorce involves both spouses voluntarily agreeing on aspects of the settlement, without the need for a judge to make a decision about the divorce.
If the decision to use an amicable divorce proceeds without involving lawyers, the process can be quite lengthy, and the parties involved could face the possibility of numerous trials and long-term court battles. A trial would involve the process of trying to prove, through documentation and arguments, that one spouse was at fault for the conduct of the other spouse. The other spouse would have to prove that the other spouse knew of the alleged behavior, yet did nothing to prevent it. Without going to trial, both sides could spend months or years trying to prove their cases in a court of law. If the amicable divorce were to result in a settlement without the involvement of attorneys, the parties would be required to quickly settle any monetary disputes that arise during the course of the settlement proceedings.
In short, the amicable divorce proceedings will allow both spouses to move on with their lives, but without the lengthy court battles and the stress that comes along with divorce proceedings. In order to ensure that you choose an approach that will help you achieve both of these goals, it is important that you engage the services of a good divorce lawyer who has experience dealing with the specific needs of your particular case. You may want to start with a no win no fee attorney who already has some experience with divorce proceedings and who will then draw up the details of the agreement and submit them to the courts for approval.