Everyone’s marriage in Tennessee is unique, and just as every marriage is unique everyone’s divorce is also unique. The major issues remain the same in most divorces, such as child custody, child support, property division and spousal support. However, these issues will be resolved based on the unique circumstances of the couple’s marriage. Couples going through a divorce also have different options on the method they use to resolve their divorce.
One option is to litigate the issues and ultimately allow the judge to make the decisions. Another is the couple could resolve all the issues between themselves through out-of-court discussions. Many couples fall somewhere in between these two methods, though. Many couples need some assistance in reaching agreements, but do not necessarily want to litigate.
These couples may find divorce mediation to be an effective tool. Mediation is a process where the couple will meet with a third-party neutral mediator who will assist them in reaching an agreement. The mediator will not make any decisions for the couple; they will simply work with both parties to help the couple reach an agreement.
Mediation has some benefits as well. One is that generally it has been found to be better for children. When parents are willing to cooperate and compromise for what is best for the children, more often the parents will be willing to co-parent. Also, oftentimes the parties agree to joint custody in mediation which can be better for the children. Another benefit is that mediation is generally is much less expensive than litigation.
Many people go through a divorce each year in Tennessee. Divorces are very fact specific and the outcomes of divorces can vary. Couples may find that mediation can be useful in helping them reach an agreement. However, it is important to understand the mediation process as well as one’s options as they go through the process. Family law attorneys understand divorce mediation and may be a useful resource.
Source: American Bar Association, “Benefits of Mediation on Divorce Cases” Holly Clemente accessed on Sept. 4, 2017