What’s The Best Way To Resolve A Port St. Lucie Divorce?
Marriage dissolution is an extremely emotional experience for everyone involved. For that reason alone, a trial is often the best way to resolve divorce matters, especially cases that are highly contested.
But most of these cases, over 95 percent by some counts, are resolved out of court during settlement negotiations. Often, such negotiations take place during court-supervised mediation sessions. Indeed, most Florida judges require mediation in marriage dissolution cases, and they only allow trials if these efforts fail.
For the most part, mediation is the best way to resolve divorces, especially if there are children involved.
The Mechanics of Mediation in Florida
A few days or weeks before the whole or half-day mediation, the mediator usually reviews the pleadings in the case to obtain familiarity with the issues. In contrast, busy family law judges in St. Lucie County may know very little about the case before they hear evidence. Sometimes that’s a good thing and sometimes it’s not.
Reviewing the pleadings gives mediators an insight into the families and the issues involved. This preparation often sets the stage for a successful settlement.
Once the session begins, the parties retire to separate rooms after lawyers give brief opening statements. Then, the mediator conveys settlement offers and counter-offers between the two sides. This arrangement helps make the proceeding more fact-based and logical as opposed to rash and emotional. Moreover, the separation is ideal for situations that involve domestic abuse allegations. For the most part, one party cannot intimidate the other one into an unfavorable settlement.
The Pluses of a Port St. Lucie Mediation
Disputes are inevitable in a post-divorce relationship. Mediation is an empowering experience in this area, because the parties know that since they talked through their problems once, they can do it again.
That being said, it’s almost always a good idea to file an agreed motion to modify in these circumstances. Such a move formalizes the new arrangement and makes it enforceable. Absent a court order, if one spouse unilaterally decides to go back to the way things were before, the other spouse usually has no recourse at all.
If the parties cannot agree on a change, the judge will impose one, if the adjustment is in the best interests of the children and there has been a substantial change in circumstances.
Moreover, successful mediation usually means substantial cost savings. It takes much less time to prepare for an attend a one-day mediation than a three or four-day trial. In Florida family law cases, time is money. Additionally, mediators do not need to review expert reports or hear from these witnesses, in most cases. As a result, the parties may save even more money through mediation.
Finally, mediation usually increases voluntary compliance with the order. If the parties feel like they were he driving force behind the settlement, they have more of a stake in the process. This dynamic, which is especially important if one or both spouses have problems with authority, often saves thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours in the future.
Rely on Experienced Lawyers
Mediation is often the best way to resolve divorce cases. For a free consultation with an experienced family law attorney in Port St. Lucie, contact Eighmie Law Firm, P.A. We routinely handle matters in St. Lucie County and all along the Treasure Coast.