Divorce is never easy; but congratulations, you are now walking away from a relationship in an effort to make things better for everyone involved. Ending on bad terms is difficult, and preparing for your first mediation session can be anxiety-inducing. Relax. With ample preparation and a proactive attitude, you can find common ground and walk away satisfied with the result.
The following are tips to help you get through the initial stages of what may become a lengthy mediation:
Prepare Necessary Financial Documents
Legal representatives from Miller & Steiert say that you must prepare documents of your assets, such as bank accounts (joint and separate, savings), credit cards, retirement funds, property (houses, vacation homes, and rental properties), life insurance policies, and other financial records. Make sure to have copies of the documents pertaining to all income sources as well. This includes, but is not limited to, self-employment profit records, social security, and paystubs.
Get to Know the Mediators before Hiring
Not all professionals who label themselves as a mediator are trained to practice. Some states do not have laws to keep an eye on mediators or hold them accountable in case things turn sour. Remember, you will be divulging particulars about the most sensitive and confidential details of your life, so you will want to choose a mediator who is trustworthy and may provide sound counsel.
Arrange a Talk with the Mediator Alone
You and your spouse can request for a few minutes of private sessions with your mediator. Attorney-mediators understand that not everything can be disclosed with both parties in the room. A private talk with your mediator will encourage you to raise specific concerns, which will help the entire process significantly.
Divorce is not easy, and so is mediation. But with ample preparation, you can make the process easier for everyone involved.