This is a question that we get often from potential clients who are interested in mediation but already have attorneys. The answer is yes, mediation is ALWAYS an option and don’t let anyone tell you differently. Now mediation isn’t going to work in all cases, but in the majority of cases, it will. For almost all, I would say there is at least one issue that could be worked out with mediation.
While it’s sometimes harder to get back to mediation after already hiring attorneys, it’s definitely still possible and can still save you a lot of time, money and stress. An important thing to remember is that even when you have hired an attorney, you are still in charge of your divorce and get to decide what happens with it and how you do it. If you are interested in mediation I would suggest finding a mediator to talk with (you can contact us for a free consult at any time) and letting your spouse know that you want to look into mediation to make sure they’re agreeable as well.
There is often a misconception that you can only mediate if you agree on everything, but that’s far from the truth. I tell my clients that the only thing you have to agree on at the beginning is that you’re committing yourself to mediation and willing to work together and understand that it will require compromise. Otherwise, many clients come in agreeing on nothing else besides the fact that they want to mediate. This can be even more so when they have attorneys already.
If you decide to mediate and you have attorneys already there are options as to whether you want to include your attorneys in mediation or just keep them as a consulting attorney. While I am open to having attorneys attend the mediation, we often find that we can get more done (not to mention it’s cheaper than having to pay both attorneys and the mediator hourly) if we just meet with the parties and then you can take your preliminary agreements back to your attorney and review and discuss them.
If you already have an attorney but are still interested in mediation and see how it benefits you, please contact us.