Irvine Divorce Mediation Attorney Debunks Common Divorce Myths
Myth #1: Complex Divorces Have to Go Through the Court
Despite what you may think or have heard, any divorce that could be heard
in court can be settled out of court. Even the most complicated financial
issues can be worked out with a mediator, often in a more effective manner
than litigation offers, and at a fraction of the cost.
Many couples who have complex financial and legal issues are choosing out-of-court
settlements because they want to reduce the seemingly exorbitant lawyers'
fees. In addition, because out-of-court settlements are focused on problem
solving, most couples can agree on strategies that allow both individuals
to keep funds in the family's bank accounts instead of spending exorbitant
amounts on legal fees.
Myth #2: Women Do Not Fare as Well as Men in Out-of-Court Settlements
Truth: Women are just as successful as men during out-of-court negotiations. This
myth stems from two common judgments about women: they do not know, or
are unable to learn, about financial issues. The attorneys at the Center
for Mediated Divorce are trained professionals who will create a safe
environment and help craft an agreement that is in the best interest of
the client, their spouse, and their family. Our Irvine divorce mediation
lawyer will not allow either spouse to get "ripped off".
Myth #3: Out-of-Court Settlements Means I Will Have to Settle for Less
Truth: It has been shown that couples generally end up dividing their assets along
the same lines regardless of whether they settled out-of-court or fought
over them in court. California is a community property state where courts
will have to split marital property down the middle, anyway. In a negotiated
settlement (mediation or cooperative process), the parties are free to
divide their assets and debts in any way that they choose. It does not
need to be a strict 50/50 split.
Myth #4: Out-of-Court Settlements Are Always the Best Option
Truth: There are times when out-of-court settlements are not appropriate:
- If there is physical or other types of abuse involved
- If judgment is impaired (i.e. from drug/alcohol addiction)
- If a spouse is hiding assets
- If one of you will not be truthful
Myth #5: The Courtroom is the Best Place to Fight for my Kids
Truth: If parents go to court to fight over the kids, the court will make the
final decision, and it may be unpleasant for both parents. Most parents
want to do everything possible to protect their access and relationship
to their children. Out-of-court settlements ensure an outcome that both
parents can live with, and it will be focused on the best interest of
Research shows that parents who settle out-of-court have a better long-term
relationship with their children. Why? Guided custody discussions can
be transformative for many people. Parents come to realize when it comes
to the kids they can be on the same side, and the result is a parenting
plan that both parents have crafted and support.
Myth #6: I have to be in the same room as my spouse. How can out-of-court settlement discussions work if we are not even speaking
to each other?
Truth: While it may be ideal to meet face-to-face, the reality is that all or
the majority of the out-of-court process can also be conducted separately.
Mediation, however, is most effective and efficient if you can discuss
the issues calmly in the presence of your mediator.
Myth #7: A Mediator Will Pressure Me into Saving My Marriage
Truth: Mediators are not therapists and their job is not to reunite spouses. Mediators
focus solely on helping both parties come up with a way to separate that
is fair and workable.
Myth #8: I won't be able to consult with experts (accountants, realtors, tax consultants, etc.) to help me make final decisions.
I will be all alone in my decision-making, and won't get what I deserve.
Truth: Guided out-of-court discussions do not preclude the parties from consulting
with professionals with expertise in particular areas, especially during
complex divorce proceedings. In fact, your attorney may even suggest it.
Your legal representative is just one part of the entire team of professionals
available to help couples through the divorce process.
Myth #9: I Will Be Getting Legal Advice from a Mediator, Instead of a Lawyer
Truth: The mediator will provide legal information, not legal advice. The mediator
will help guide the process so both parties can make decisions based on
what is best for both individuals and the family. Usually the mediator
will recommend that you review your final settlement agreement with an
attorney before executing and filing the final document(s).
Myth #10: Out-of-Court Discussions Will Not Work Because I Am Intimidated
by My Spouse
Truth: Guided by a professional, out-of-court discussions can be a very empowering
process, and help the intimidated spouse feel stronger through the education
and knowledge they receive during the settlement process. A good mediator
understands how to conduct settlement discussions in a safe environment
so both parties express their wants and needs, building better two-way
communication skills between the parties. Guided by a professional, out-of-court
settlement discussions can build self-esteem, and provide good training
for dealing with ex-spouses and family after the divorce is complete.
Call Our Firm Today for a FREE Consultation at (714) 706-3992
If you have more questions or concerns related to your current divorce
situation, do not wait another moment to speak with our Irvine divorce
mediation attorneys. Our legal team is ready to empower you with the information
and support you need to move forward with a new chapter of your life.
Contact the Center for Mediated Divorce
today at (714) 706-3992
Request a free and confidential consultation by filling out our
free evaluation form