No matter if you want to mediation your divorce in Chicago, Schaumburg, Naperville or Joliet or anywhere else in Illinois), one thing nearly for certain is that preparing for mediation of an Illinois divorce will make mediation more effective.
I wrote this article to help people figure out how to prepare for divorce mediation in Illinois.
Major categories of issues
It may seem elementary, but consider that divorce mediation issues can be broken down into several broad categories.
How to Prepare for Divorce Mediation: The Emotional
Divorce can be an emotional process. As a divorce mediator and an Illinois divorce lawyer, I know that to be the case. Consider asking yourself the following questions.
- Do I have the strength to mediate? If you are worried you don’t here’s some news for you – going to court is a lot harder. In mediation you might sit in the same room as your spouse, or different rooms. At the extreme, there is telephone mediation.
- Can I stand up for myself? While a skilled mediator such as myself will keep an eye out for power imbalances, each person has to be able to stand up for themselves while being open to compromise.
- Do I trust my partner? Your marriage may be coming to an end. Many times there is a breakdown of trust. Can your partner mediate in good faith? Can you?
If you have kids, you will likely mediation the issues of child custody and visitation. Check out my article “Mediating Child Custody and Visitation: the basics” for a bit more about that.
Financial aspects of divorce mediation
If you are getting divorced, you need to come to agreement on issues such as property division, debt division, child support, and spousal support.
It is useful to think about each of the financial aspects of your divorce prior to mediation. If a divorce is financially complicated, you may wish to consult an accountant or tax planner.
Keep in mind that mediation is give and take.
Legal Aspects of divorce mediation
You could get divorced without using a lawyer. But as a divorce lawyer in Illinois, I can tell you that is very risky. I have several cases right now where people did their own divorces and screwed things up – now years later they are back in court.
If you do have a lawyer, you will want to have your lawyer review any agreement reached in mediation. The lawyer should give you feedback and put it into the proper form to become part of your judgment for dissolution.
Getting started with divorce mediation
Mediation can help you achieve an amicable and uncontested divorce. If you want a quick and affordable divorce, mediation can help you with that to.