At your first mediation session the divorce mediator should explain to both you and your spouse in detail how the process works. The mediator should also explain his or her fee structure as well as the estimated cost associated with conducting the mediation. After explaining both the process and the cost associated with the process with you both the mediator then typically interviews the two of you in order to ascertain all of the relevant facts pertaining to your divorce.
Subsequent to obtaining all of the initial information the mediator will then explain to you the legal concepts that are involved in practically every divorce. Those concepts include but are not limited to alimony, the equitable distribution of the marital assets, and the child related issues consisting of child custody and child support.
The above should typically take about 30 minutes to an hour and takes place during the first mediation session. At the conclusion of the initial mediation session the mediator will typically ask both parties to gather certain other financial documentation prior to the commencement of the next mediation session. Such items typically include current pay stubs, current account balances relative to bank accounts the parties may have as well as balances in their respective retirement accounts. It is also quite common for the mediator to suggest that the parties obtain an appraisal or contact a local realtor to obtain an estimate as to the value of the marital home.
If the couple is getting along it is not uncommon for a divorce mediation to be concluded after the 2nd divorce mediation session. At the conclusion of the mediation the divorce mediator typically drafts either a comprehensive memorandum of understanding or a draft marital settlement agreement for the parties. After receiving that agreement the parties then typically engage their own respective attorneys to assist with filing the paperwork required in order to finalize the divorce.
Prior to engaging the services of a mediator, it would make sense to inquire as to the mediator’s level of experience, education, and training. An effective mediator can make the divorce process quite affordable and easy to navigate.
Should you be interested in divorce mediation please contact Vincent De Luca Esquire of the law firm of Villani & DeLuca. Mr. DeLuca is an experienced mediator and will be able to answer any of your questions. Please do not hesitate to call today.