Divorce mediation demeanor dos and don'ts

If you and your spouse have decided to mediate your divorce settlement, you have likely retained some optimism that your divorce process can progress in a relatively civil and fair manner. In order to retain that optimism and see your goals through to the end, it is critical that you approach your divorce mediation in a certain way.

Mediation is meant to be a relatively non-confrontational process. This does not mean that you cannot argue over truly important matters, stand your ground on issues that are important to you and question your spouse’s approach. However, it is important that you arrive to your mediation with a calm and clear mind and attempt to project a rational and civil demeanor throughout the process.

Failure to project yourself as willing to negotiate, rational and level-headed may inspire your mediation process to halt. Understand what is important to you going into the process, not only in terms of ultimate divorce settlement provisions but also in terms of overall outcome. If settling your divorce in a fair and peaceful way is important to you, keeping that outcome in mind may aid you in remaining professional and willing to compromise.

With that said, remember that your divorce settlement will affect your future. Please consult your attorney before agreeing to give up a great deal of income or property simply to end the process without a great deal of conflict. Retaining a professional demeanor is often key to a successful mediation. But if your peaceful mediation is going to cost you too much in terms of what is important to you, it may be time for you and your attorney to rethink your divorce strategy.

Source: Huffington Post, “Your Demeanor Can Affect Your Divorce Mediation,” Diane L. Danois, July 23, 2013

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