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Schlaich & Thompson Chartered Bel Air Family, Divorce & Criminal Lawyer

How Does Divorce Mediation Work In Maryland?


Divorces are traditionally depicted as battles waged between soon-to-be former spouses who are not getting along. While this often remains true, more couples are choosing mediation over litigation to dissolve their marriages. Mediation is considered a form of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) in which the spouses come together to hammer out key issues related to their impending separation. This includes matters such as property division, alimony, child custody, and child support.

For mediation to work, both parties must be ready to compromise and cooperate to reach a mutually beneficial resolution. Couples who can do that will find that they spend a lot less money on their divorce than couples who cannot.

What happens during divorce mediation? 

The goal of divorce mediation is to produce a settlement that you both agree to. The role of the mediator is to act as a neutral third party who facilitates that agreement. The role of the divorcing couple is to figure out which matters can be handled easily and which require more communication. Divorce mediation can be used to resolve issues such as:

  • Alimony
  • Child custody and visitation
  • Child support
  • Division of property and debts
  • Temporary issues related to the payment of household expenses pending the divorce

The mediator’s job is not to decide your case. In fact, the mediator makes no decisions at all. Instead, the couple makes decisions and agrees to them as part of the divorce resolution. Mediators are not like judges who make decisions based on testimony provided by the couple. They are not permitted to advise either of the spouses during the process. Their role is to facilitate an agreement between the spouses. The mediator can also use their experience to determine if there are any potential problems, and help the parties find solutions to these problems.

Mediation is confidential. The resulting settlement is confidential. In a litigated divorce, all issues that appear before a judge are a matter of public record. This means that you and your spouse can work through difficult issues without worrying whether or not what you say will be used against you in court. A mediator can never be subpoenaed as a witness in a divorce case.

What happens if we can’t resolve all issues? 

Issues that can be resolved in mediation will remain resolved even if you can’t reach an agreement on all issues. If you can’t reach an agreement on one crucial matter, that matter can proceed to litigation. While you lose some of the benefits of mediation by litigating this matter, you won’t have to litigate every matter and this can greatly reduce the amount of money you spend on your divorce.

Talk to a Maryland Divorce Attorney Today 

Schlaich & Thompson, Chartered represents the interests of Maryland residents who want to divorce. Call our Bel Air family attorneys today to schedule an appointment, and we can use our 60 years of experience to help you resolve any issues related to your divorce decree.

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