How Do You Conduct A Successful Divorce Mediation In Florida?
In the broadest of terms, mediation saves time, stress, and money. It eliminates the stress that one might find in a courtroom. It allows people to engage in a dignified, confidential process that is faster and more cost efficient than a litigated battle. Also, it’s better for the children. The process begins with a call to my office and I am very happy to spend whatever time is necessary to discuss any detail of the process and what my role is.
I always make sure there is an opportunity for the other spouse to call me and have a similar communication because as a mediator, my responsibility is to both people, equally. Once they have decided that this process is something they want to move forward with, we’ll send a confirmation letter, and attach forms that are helpful to fill out prior to the mediation. Also sent to the parties is a financial affidavit, which guides them to calculate their monthly gross income, monthly expenses for living separately, plus all assets and liabilities.
That would bring us to the first meeting. There is a difference of opinion between mediators as to what the best way to perform mediation is. I do training of mediators each year with a fellow mediator from another city, and his style is to meet with people several times for about two hours at a time. He addresses the parenting plan first and the financial issues last. My position is that one elongated session of three to four hours will generally suffice for most people, and be more time efficient.
I begin with the division of finances and assets, and then move into addressing the couples positions on the issue of alimony, and finally, establishing the timesharing plan. Once the timesharing has been established, I have the information I need to be able to calculate child support according to the Florida guidelines. The primary variables included in the calculation of child support are the net income of each party, the amounts of overnights, and whether or not daycare is going to be included in the calculation of child support. Child support at this stage is strictly formula driven. At the conclusion of the calculation of child support, the face to face mediation is complete. Shortly thereafter, I provide the Husband and Wife with the initial draft of the Settlement Agreement and Parenting Plan to review. And generally, beyond that, I prepare the documents required for filing in court with the information that has been provided by the parties.
For more information on Conducting A Successful Divorce Mediation, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get more information by calling (407) 834-5800 today.
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