Family Matters Law Group is proud to present Legal Snacks, short videos about topics in family law. By watching these videos, you can find answers to many of the most frequently asked questions. This will help make your consultation sessions more productive.
In this month’s Legal Snack, we address the topic of mediation and cover the basics that you need to know about this essential process.
Here is Mrs. Edidiong Aaron, founder, and owner of Family Matters Law Group:
In this Legal Snack, Mrs. Aaron addresses several questions about mediation:
Mediation is one of the earliest steps you will take in a divorce. It is a chance for both parties to come to an agreement without having to take their case to court and involve a judge.
In mediation, a neutral third party sits down with both husband and wife and facilitates a discussion to try and work out a divorce agreement. In most counties in the metro Atlanta area, going through mediation is a mandatory preliminary step before you can have your divorce case entered into the court calendar.
The state of Georgia expects that you make a good faith effort to work things out between yourselves before you involve the courts. Keep in mind that you do not have to come to an agreement in this process -- you merely have to be able to show the court that you made the attempt.
With mediation, both spouses, their attorneys, and the third party mediator will all convene in a meeting room in a designated facility. If you feel that you absolutely cannot be in the same room as your spouse, or you feel that the meeting will not lead to a productive outcome, you can request through your attorney for mediation to occur in separate rooms.
One thing to keep in mind is that even though mediation is required in most Atlanta metro counties, it isn’t free. Both parties in the divorce will need to split the cost of the mediation which usually starts at around $100 per hour and can go higher. Be prepared for that expense.
Also, mediation must remain confidential. In order for both parties to work out their differences and hopefully arrive at an agreement, it is vital that there be an open and honest dialogue. Nothing that is said during mediation can be used in court. The only exception is if someone makes a comment that indicates they are a danger to themselves or others.
Mediation doesn’t have to be a painful process. An experienced attorney can help advocate effectively for your needs and the needs of your family.
Family Matters Law Group has extensive mediation experience and sees clients across the Atlanta metro area. If you are beginning a divorce case, contact our office by calling or using our online contact form. We’re ready to hear your story and fight hard for your children, your money, and your assets!