When a California marriage has come to its end, there is no doubt that the parties to it have spent more time fighting than they ever thought possible. By the time they decide that divorce is their only option they may want to seek out a means of achieving marital dissolution without having to argue about every detail of their post-divorce lives. This can mean avoiding court all together and using divorce mediation as the means of bringing their legal relationship to its end.
A mediated divorce is one in which the parties to the ending marriage work together to set their own terms for custody, support and property division. They do not appear before a judge. Instead, they work with a mediator who helps them find balance and resolution to their differences. Their mediator does not make any decisions for them: the goals of a mediated divorce are to manage conflict in the divorce process and to give the parties control over how the important aspects of their lives will be managed after their divorce is completed.
There is no penalty for choosing mediation over litigation in a divorce. In fact, it can be more cost-effective for a couple to use mediation instead of the California courts to end their marriage. However, mediation is not for everyone and individuals who plan to divorce should consider all of their options before committing to a particular divorce path.
At the end of a marriage it may seem impossible for the parties to work together to bring their relationship to its close. But, with the right mediator, many individuals are able to avoid conflict and anger in their divorces and are able to maintain control over the issues that are important to them in their post-marital lives.