If you are like most Texas parents, you hope to minimize the impact that your divorce will have on your children. That being the case, neither of you wants to risk your divorce degrading into a contentious court battle that could make the process harder on everyone, especially your children. So, you and the other parent decided that you didn't want to go to court to resolve your issues.
However, when you attempted to reach an agreement without any help, your negotiations came to a standstill. This may be when you began to consider mediation, but you want more information before making a decision regarding whether it will suit your situation.
Mediation has numerous benefits
You may already be aware that mediation usually costs less than going to court, but you may not be familiar with the other benefits it provides. Some of the most common ways in which mediation helps parents include the following:
- You and the other parent retain more control over the outcome. This means that you may end up with solutions that the court may not be able to consider.
- The mediator helps keep you both on track, to communicate and to reach an agreement that benefits everyone.
- The process encourages each of you to participate. You each have the chance to voice your opinions and offer solutions.
- Your discussions remain private.
- You and the other parent may be more willing to adhere to the agreement since you both designed and agreed to it.
Mediators also help by keeping you each on track. It can be easy to end up in arguments that derail your discussions. Many couples often end up in court when this happens while trying to negotiate terms on their own, but since you have a neutral third party involved, you may avoid this eventuality as long as you remain committed to the process.
Make sure you have the right support
Even if you decide to opt for mediation, it doesn't necessarily mean that you don't need assistance. The mediator does not provide legal advice, which is an important component of any good child custody agreement. It might benefit you greatly to make use of local legal resources in order to get the most out of the experience. Once you come to an agreement, you may also benefit from having an experienced family law attorney put it into writing in a way that helps ensure the court approves your plan.