The Process

The Divorce Mediation Process

The Divorce Mediation Process helps the divorcing parents establish new relationship based on co-parenting the children

The Divorce Mediation Process helps the divorcing parents establish new relationship based on co-parenting the children

The Rockland County Family Divorce Mediation Center has developed a process that helps couples in Rockland, Orange or Westchester divorce as smoothly as possible.  Divorce mediation is a process for couples who want to be active participants in their divorce and can cooperate in the process. The goal is to bring your family through this difficult time as easily as possible. Below is a brief outline of the process.

The first session will consist of an overview of the divorce mediation process. We will discuss what both of you expect and what you are looking to accomplish. Next, we will cover the ground rules that will enable us to work through the issues of your divorce and come to an amicable resolution. I will provide each of you a printed guideline of the decisions to be resolved during mediation so that all relevant issues are addressed. This process will require that everyone take ownership to get the best results.  Mediation will allow both of you to develop a fair agreement that minimizes duress. The result is a divorce agreement that you jointly develop, and that takes into consideration the fact that you both know what is better for you and your children than a judge.

The Process Of Your Divorce Mediation Sessions

The average mediation takes between 3 to 8 sessions. The divorce mediation process allows us to examine and break down issues into their essential components. We will then consider each issue and negotiate it so that both you and your children are treated fairly. As a divorce mediator, it is my job to help you view these issues in a respectful manner and work together to develop equitable solutions that minimize the negative consequences for you and your children. We will engage in a cooperative problem-solving process where communication is clear, and everyone is heard.  Mediation is the process that will lead to the best solution to this most difficult issue. It is also the path that increases the potential for a new post-divorce communication process to take root that enables you to best address your children’s needs as you continue to co-parent them.

Topics & Issues That Are Addressed And Resolved In The Divorce Mediation Process Are:

  1. Custody and parental access
  2. Parenting plan – dealing with visitation and parental access
    1. Who will have the children on what days (schooldays and weekends)
    2. Birthdays
    3. Holidays
    4. Vacations
    5. Summer vacations
    6. School holidays
    7. Children’s activities & sports
  3. Major decisions affecting the health, education and well-being of the children
    1. Children’s activities and sports
    2. Discipline
    3. Education
    4. Religion
    5. Age of emancipation for children
    6. How any modifications of the parenting plan will be handled and what  events would trigger the need for a change
  4. Financial issues – division of assets and debt, child support, maintenance
    1. Identify assets and liabilities
    2. Classify them as marital or separate
    3. Agree on the value of assets and liabilities
    4. Develop a plan to distribute the marital assets and liabilities equitably
    5. What are the assets & liabilities – items that will be reviewed:
      1. paystubs
      2. W-2 and tax returns
      3. records for all investments
      4. mortgages
      5. current values of real estate
      6. insurance policies
      7. retirement programs – work related & personal
      8. value of any gold, precious stones, antiques or collectibles
      9. boats, cars, motorcycles, etc.
      10. credit card and any other debt
    6. child support
  5. other financial support for the children
    1. how confirmations,  bar mitzvahs, graduations, and weddings will be planned and paid for
    2. costs and contributions to schooling
    3. childcare (if pertinent)
    4. after-school programs
    5. healthcare
    6. extra costs such as braces
    7. any other foreseeable costs for the children
    8. spousal support
    9. how the divorce costs will be paid for

 

Each mediation will take on a life of its own.  There may be times when I meet alone with one of the parties, but most sessions will be with both parties.  If both parties commit to the process and remain focused on developing solutions, divorce mediation is a very efficient yet effective means of working through a difficult process.   Additionally, it helps build the communication skills needed to co-parent effectively once the divorce is complete.  There is a saying that divorce mediation is the solution for divorcing couples who love their children more than they currently dislike (in some cases hate) their spouse.

The divorce mediation services can be conducted in my office in New City, NY, or we can meet at a neutral location in Rockland, Westchester or Orange Counties, NY.  Call 845-639-0982 for more information.

 

 

Topic: The divorce mediation process