What is divorce mediation in New Jersey and do I need an attorney?
Divorce mediation is a process in which a neutral third party (called the mediator) helps couples negotiate issues in their divorce case. This is often a better option than going to court because it allows the couple to settle their own issues and avoid costly litigation costs.
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When Can I Mediate My New Jersey Divorce?
A judge may order a couple to attend mediation in cases where there are substantial disagreements about alimony, child custody, and other divorce issues. This is especially true for cases that involve children. In fact, some judges refer couples to mediation through the Early Settlement Program.
If you want to mediate your New Jersey divorce, it’s important to do your homework first. Then you can find a New Jersey mediator who is experienced in family law and divorce matters. You’ll need to come prepared with a list of all of your assets and debts, including financial and non-financial.
You might also be able to get your lawyer involved in the mediation process to help you resolve issues that aren’t covered in the divorce agreement. This is an excellent way to make sure that you’re fully informed about your options and that you’re making the best decision for you and your future.
What Is the Cost of Divorce Mediation in New Jersey?
Although the exact cost of a mediated divorce depends on the nature of your case, it is generally much less expensive than a traditional court-ordered divorce. This is because mediation is typically much less time-consuming than a trial, and it allows parties to reach an agreement quickly.
What if I Can’t Work Out All of the Issues in My Divorce?
If a couple cannot reach an agreement on all of the issues in their divorce, it is possible for them to end the mediation process and move on to court. This can happen if they are unable to agree on issues such as child custody, how many children should receive support, and how bank accounts should be divided.
During a mediation session, the couple and their attorneys are allowed to speak freely and work toward a resolution for all of their outstanding issues. However, any information that is discussed during the mediation sessions must be kept confidential. This is important, because anything that is shared during a mediated divorce can’t be used in court later.
Can I Have My Attorney Attend a Mediation Session?
In New Jersey, mediation is generally voluntary. Parties who participate in mediation can be ordered to attend by a court judge, but it is not a requirement in most cases.
What if My Spouse is Abusing Me?
If your spouse is abusive, you may be able to get the judge to order him or her to stop participating in mediation. This is possible in some cases, but it can be hard to do if you have young children.