Mediation is an extremely common element of most divorces in Illinois, but not everybody seems to understand what actually occurs at mediation because mediation is not, in effect, a mini-trial. Mediation instead represents an effort by both spouses in a divorce to craft a mutually agreed upon plan by working with a neutral third party known as a mediator.
Whether you are looking for someone to act as a neutral mediator in your case, or to represent you during your own mediation, Brinkmeier Law, LLC can help you. Brinkmeier Law, LLC helps clients all over Illinois work through mediation to get the best possible results for their divorce case. Our firm handles mediation sessions throughout Cook County, DuPage County, Will County, Lake County, and McHenry County.
Mediation is often voluntary, meaning both spouses have elected to try it to resolve their divorce issues. Some courts may order couples to attend mediation to resolve their issues.
Many spouses will attend mediation before filing for divorce to try and reach separation agreements that will allow for uncontested divorce filings that can be much cheaper and quicker than contested cases. A separation agreement must determine how marital property will be divided, whether one spouse will pay spousal maintenance, and how child custody and child support will work.
If spouses do not attend mediation before filing for divorce, then they often attend it during the proceedings. Most spouses will have to attend a management conference within 90 days of filing for divorce.
Mediation can be expensive, but Cook County does offer free mediation from Cook County Family Mediation Services when spouses must mediate issues related to child custody. Similarly, indigent parents in DuPage County could be referred to the DuPage County Family Center for mediation services.
Mediation is a common solution for many couples but does not always work in all cases. For example, divorces involving instances of domestic violence are probably not going to be ideal for mediation.
Mediation in Illinois will be confidential, meaning that anything the spouses say to mediators, or any documents provided during the sessions cannot be revealed to judges unless parties agree to disclosures. The confidentiality will not apply to information included in a signed separation agreement, any information or documents shared as part of discovery, child abuse reports, and threats or statements about plans to commit violence.
Mediators may help prepare formal separation agreements at the conclusion of mediation, and a couple then only needs to file for a dissolution of the marriage in an Illinois court. A judge will review the final agreement, maybe ask some questions, and then sign the final divorce decree to make the agreement part of the judgment.
Are you thinking that your divorce is probably heading to mediation and that you are going to need legal counsel to ensure that you are able to get everything you want when you are negotiating your case? You will want to get in touch with Brinkmeier Law, LLC, because we have helped countless clients navigate the mediation waters and emerge with confidence in their divorce decisions.
Our firm knows how concerning mediation can be for many people but we will work closely with you so you can know what to expect and be able to work hard to find solutions in your case. Call (312) 291-4486 or contact us online to receive a free consultation with our Illinois mediation attorney.