Long Island Divorce Attorneys Explain the Benefits of Mediation vs. Fighting in Court

Helping you choose the right strategy for reaching your long-term goals

Every divorce is different, so family law attorneys must be flexible in the methods they use to achieve their clients goals. At Bryan L. Salamone & Associates, P.C., we’ve made our reputation by working aggressively to resolve tough, contentions divorce cases. But that doesn’t mean we’re in favor of taking every divorce issue to court. Often we’re able to achieve our clients’ goals through traditional negotiation or mediation of their ancillary issues. Our attorneys have managed hundreds of divorces. We know how to get results for our clients, no matter what method we employ.

Advantages and disadvantages of mediation in the New York divorce process

Mediation has proven so helpful in resolving divorce issues that many states have made it mandatory. New York has not gone that route. But our state does encourage couples to try accomplishing an uncontested divorce through mediation before going to trial. Advantages to mediation include:

  • Lower costs than trial — Many couples retain attorneys during mediation to prepare them for their sessions and to clarify legal issues that arise. When they reach a tentative agreement, their attorney reviews it and suggests amendments. This amounts to less billable time for your attorney than you would have to pay for a trial.
  • More flexible scheduling — You can schedule it at your convenience, without having to wait for an opening in the court calendar. This allows couples to move more quickly through the process with fewer interruptions.
  • Cooperative rather than adversarial process — Couples who have children often need to rebuild trust so they’ll be able to co-parent effectively later on. The cooperative nature of mediation helps in this regard.

There are potential disadvantages to mediation, stemming from:

  • Lack of leverage — Mediation is entirely voluntary and neither party is compelled to reach an agreement.
  • Intimidation — Mediation is not for couples where there has been a history of domestic violence. It can only be effective when both parties are free to express themselves without fear.
  • Quality of the mediator — The mediator is supposed to be an impartial third party who facilitates focused discussion and progress towards an agreement. But the requirements to become a divorce mediator are not terribly rigorous, so the quality of service varies greatly. There is no requirement that a mediator be an attorney. If the mediator you choose lacks training, shows favoritism or misunderstands the law, you won’t get the full benefit of the divorce mediation process. We’ve worked with many mediators in the past and can recommend some who are extremely competent.

At Salamone & Associates, we put our experience to work for you, so that if you choose to pursue mediation you can avoid the pitfalls and maximize your chances for success.

Consult divorce attorneys who understand mediation. Call us today.

Bryan L. Salamone & Associates, P.C. is an aggressive divorce law firm, but we’re often able to achieve our clients’ goals through alternative means, like mediation. To schedule a free initial consultation with an experienced divorce lawyer, call 1.631.479.3839 or contact our office online. Take control of the process, and pick up the phone!