Going through a divorce can make a person feel as though she has very little control over the events of her life. The process of her divorce is often governed by the rules of the court and the laws of the state in which she lives. If she and her soon-to-be ex-spouse had a prenuptial agreement, some of the property-based decisions about the marital dissolution may be established even before the first court hearings.
In California, many couples choose to litigate their divorces in this traditional way. Some deliberately choose the process while others concede to it as they are unfamiliar with other options that they have for ending their marriages. One other option is divorce mediation, and for some couples it is an excellent way to maintain some control over the processes of their marital dissolutions.
The American Bar Association offers a useful review of some of the ways mediation can serve couples during the ends of their marriages. For example, in a mediated divorce, the parties to the marriage decide how they want their property to be divided, if and how support should be assigned and how their children's custody should be established. They do not have to have a court tell them how these important matters will be resolved: they can make the decisions for themselves.
Additionally, couples that use divorce mediation can prioritize the matters that are most important to them rather than relying on a court to recognize the significant elements of their ending relationships. Control over these matters leaves many couples with higher levels of satisfaction about their divorces than satisfaction levels of couples who litigate their divorces.
A divorce often means losing control over one of the significant relationships that an individual has ever had. However, mediation can help individuals maintain some power over the important decisions that they must make in order to end their marriages. Not all divorce attorneys are prepared to advise their clients on mediation, so those readers who wish to learn more about this divorce option may choose to seek out counselors who include it in their practices.