Minimizing expenses, time management and conflict is high on the list of priorities for many California couples who are ready to end their marriages. However, popular media often likes to portray divorce in a singular way — litigious, costly and time-consuming. This does not have to be your reality. Depending on your situation, mediation could provide a meaningful alternative to approaching divorce.

As a form of alternative dispute resolution, mediation seeks to help divorcing couples negotiate their own settlements. While you might have previously believed that only a judge could create a divorce settlement, you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse understand your situation more than anyone else. Using mediation lets you keep control over the outcome of your divorce and agreements.

You will not have to tackle this process alone, though. A mediator will be present for all negotiations, and his or her job will be to help facilitate the process. Mediators ensure that both people have all of the necessary information to make decisions that are informed and balanced. Aside from the mediator, you can also choose to have your legal counsel present, who can provide necessary guidance regarding various matters. California parents can even use mediation to address things like child custody and support, although they do have the option to fall back on the court should they be unable to do so.

Mediation can also be a smart choice for couples who wish to keep the details of their divorce private. Understanding all of these benefits can make it easier for divorcing couples to choose mediation instead of heading straight toward litigation. Still interested in learning more about mediation and how it can benefit your divorce? You can that and other related family law topics on our website.