The length of time needed to complete your divorce mediation process may vary considerably depending on the complexity of the proceedings. Understanding the factors that can affect the duration of your mediation can help you manage your expectations and help you deal with the negotiation process more easily. Here are some of the primary factors that could affect the length of time needed to complete your divorce.
Do You Have Children?
When children are involved, it can significantly complicate divorce cases even for situations handled by mediation attorneys. If you have children, a number of issues may arise during your divorce proceedings, including the following:
- Child custody and visitation rights
- Parenting plans, including living arrangements
- Child support
- Religious, medical and educational matters
If you and your former partner can agree on these matters quickly, it can help speed up your divorce proceedings. In most cases, however, the courts will look at these arrangements carefully to make sure they are in the best interests of your children and are workable for you and your former spouse.
Do You Have Substantial Debts or Assets?
Dividing your debts and assets can be more difficult and time-consuming if you are significantly in debt or have many assets to account for during the divorce mediation process. In some cases, it may be easy for you and your former partner to agree on an appropriate way to divide your financial assets and liabilities. If you are unable to reach a reasonable agreement on your own, it may take longer to resolve the economic aspects of your marriage and finalize your divorce.
Can You Compromise?
A willingness to negotiate is an essential element for successful mediation. This is especially true for divorce proceedings. If you and your former partner can put your personal feelings aside to find common ground and make decisions that are beneficial for both you and your children, you can often shorten the time needed to complete your divorce proceedings. This can help reduce the cost of your divorce and help you achieve the most practical solutions for everyone involved. If you and your former spouse can agree on specifics, you may be able to streamline the divorce process to a significant degree.
Do You Still Have Conflict With Your Former Partner?
If you have hurt feelings or anger towards your partner, it may be difficult to come to an agreement during the mediation process. Setting aside your emotions and working to resolve problems that arise during divorce mediation can help ensure the process goes as smoothly as possible.
In most cases, the speed of mediated divorce proceedings is dependent on the ability of both partners to agree on the issues involved. It is important to remember that by working with a divorce mediator, you can increase your chance of a faster resolution, but only if you are willing to compromise.