Throughout your life, you have probably seen numerous scenes from films and TV shows where leading actors and actresses resolve contested family law cases in the courtroom.
But do not be mistaken, going to trial is not as glamorous and fascinating in real life. Generally, roughly two-thirds of all divorces and other family law cases in Utah are resolved through mediation.
Our Salt Lake City divorce attorney from the Emy A Cordano, Attorney At Law explains that you may be required to participate in mediation before going to final trial, especially if you are seeking to alter a pre-existing order (child support, alimony, or other).
What is mediation in divorce?
So what is mediation? First of all, do not confuse mediation with meditation, though many people still mispronounce these two terms. In a nutshell, mediation is a collaborative process where two parties sit down in front of an independent mediator whose job is to ensure a productive dialogue between the two parties and help them come to a mutually satisfactory settlement or conclusion.
Basically, mediation is the mini version of the trial, where each side gets to discuss what they want from the opposing side and why they want it, and then listen to the other party without interrupting him or her. Mediation also allows both parties to understand some basic principles of family law in Salt Lake City and all across Utah.
This “reality check” is critical to eliminate some unreasonable expectations about what each party is hoping to achieve from taking their case to trial.
Mediation vs trial: pros and cons
One of the best advantages of mediation over the trial is that both parties are given complete control over the outcome of their case. If you choose to resolve a divorce through family law, the judge will be the one with complete control over your case.
In addition to that, other benefits of meditation include getting independent and honest feedback about the prospects of your case and picking up important talking points from the mediator. If you choose mediation over the trial, you may be able to resolve the family law case faster, in a less stressful and adversarial setting, and only at a small portion of the cost of taking it to trial.
Also, practice shows that ex-spouses or former partners who resolve their differences through mediation tend to have a much more positive relationship with the other side as opposed to trial, where both parties want to kill each other.
Mediation is confidential, but there are exceptions
One of the reasons why mediation is so effective in helping two parties reach a consensus is because it allows both parties to be completely open about their side of the story. Our divorce attorney in Salt Lake City warns, however, that everything that gets discussed in meditation is confidential and cannot be used against the other party in court.
However, as always, there are exceptions to this general rule. For example, if your partner threatens you with violence or reveals a previously unreported incident of the child or elder abuse during mediation, you may be able to use this against your partner in order to seek a restraining order.
But it is your lawyer who gets the most important role in mediation, as he or she will be your advocate, advisor, supporter, and draftsman. In mediation, it is imperative to find out what is the best outcome for you and what you can get from the other party. And that is when your Salt Lake City divorce attorney comes in handy.
Are you considering what would be the best option to resolve your divorcer, mediation, or going to trial? Consult with our experienced lawyers at Emy A Cordano, Attorney At Law. Get a legal consultation by calling at 801-804-5152 or fill out this contact form.