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Divorce mediation in Washington: What does it entail?

On Behalf of | Jan 8, 2021 | Divorce, Family Law Mediation

Following is a scenario that routinely plays out for Washington couples who are striving hard though unsuccessfully to salvage a marriage that has simply become untenable.

The sheer effort put forth by many partners to keep their union intact is unquestioned. Legions of spouses took that “forever” vow with utmost seriousness and continuously strive to do everything possible to preserve their marriages.

Sometimes that works.

And sometimes it just doesn’t. Many couples ultimately realize that they will be mutually better off if they legally part ways and pursue a fresh start marked by new hope and possibility.

That determination is spotlighted by one Washington legal source addressing family law. That overview notes that, “Making the decision to divorce usually comes after years of struggle.”

Many impending exes understandably balk a bit when they dwell upon divorce and the dissolution details. How does the process work? How can disagreements be addressed and legally resolved? Is there an established route that ultimately leads to a workable agreement?

Spotlighting divorce mediation in Washington

A mediated process often comes to the fore in many Washington legal matters, including family law issues like child custody and divorce. Mediation is premised on the view that key decisions and optimal solutions are commonly best promoted in a defused atmosphere that differs markedly from litigation in an adversarial court environment.

Divorce mediation is overseen by a mediator (many couples select a proven attorney for this role), who takes an impartial position. An in-depth online analysis of divorce mediation explains how that professional guides the process. A mediator “facilitates communications, promotes understanding, focuses the parties on their interests and seeks creative problem solving to enable parties to reach their own agreement.”

That referenced ownership is a key mediation focus, given the empowerment and sense of well-being that often emerges for couples commanding autonomy over key matters during a life-defining period.

Fundamental goals that are pursued in divorce mediation

The aims of family law mediation are multiple and diverse, although they all centrally target a legal solution that proves fundamentally fair and beneficial for participating parties. Here are some central goals:

  • Minimize the time and expense of a court-regulated process
  • Dampen down the rancor and volatility often tied to adversarial litigation
  • Enhance possibilities for post-divorce civility
  • Reach optimal solutions regarding children
  • Open/candid negotiation that leads to a well-crafted, comprehensive and fair divorce agreement

Mediation is not a process that must be adhered to for couples that simply cannot work together and resolve major differences. The option to proceed to court always remains available. Many divorcing partners benefit materially from mediated engagement, though. A proven family law team with mediation experience can provide further information.