Is Mediation always the Best Approach?

 Mediation is not for everyone. There are a lot of times where mediation is not appropriate. If there is a restraining order, if their perspectives regarding physical, emotional or verbal abuse that maybe good reasons not to.  If one party has their judgment impaired whether that is from substance abuse or mental health issues. If the party is not trustworthy even under pains and penalties of perjury in terms of disclosing assets or income divorce litigation is better at finding hidden assets. There are times even if you and your spouse try and work out everything to the best of your abilities that there are true differences.  So sometimes mediation if there are 20 issues can get you 15 of those issues resolved, but not the last 5 or 19 out of 20 issues resolved and you might have to proceed with a more traditional divorce.

Will our Divorce Agreement or so-called “Separation Agreement” be enforceable?

Once the Agreement has been signed that is the first step.  In order for it to be completely enforceable you need to go in front of a judge. The judge has to accept the Agreement.  The Court is very much in favor of the parties working out the Agreement and just have to find that the Agreement is fair and reasonable.

Should I talk to a Lawyer or Accountant during Mediation?    

This is a frequent question and the answer is yes.  It is an advantage to have a qualified attorney be able to give you independent legal advice because mediation, the mediator works as a neutral party and it is very helpful to have a lawyer review the Agreement before it is signed and/or have an accountant look at some of the tax advantages and disadvantages.