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Divorce mediation can also be effective following dissolution

The expression “scorched earth” fits seamlessly with certain depictions of armed conflict.

And divorce.

At least some divorces. Couples in certain instances retain their personal resentments and acrimony throughout the dissolution process, rendering it a virtual imperative that they end their marriage in the same adversarial fashion that they endured it.

That means inside the courthouse, in front of a judge who will make binding determinations on important matters such as child custody and visitation, property division, support and other considerations because, quite simply, the couple cannot reach agreement between themselves.

Litigated divorce is of course a commonplace in Georgia and all other states each year even for couples who fall short of combatant status. Sometimes it simply takes a third-party facilitator to get things done.

That facilitator needn’t always be a judge, however. For some couples who can at least work together with a modicum of restraint and reasonableness, divorce mediation can spell a sterling alternative to the courthouse door.

And, notes one family law columnist, mediation can continue to be relevant even after divorce, given that former spouses don’t usually live in parallel existences without some level of continued contact. Child-related problems can still crop up post-divorce. So, too, can issues centered on money, visitation, altered parenting plans and a host of other matters.

A central advantage of mediation is that solutions can be crafted through interaction with an impartial third party who works with all parties to find agreeable compromises. That is often far from the goal that guides a judge. Moreover, mediation can be cheaper than litigation, as well as more empowering to the participants and conducted in a far less formal and restrictive atmosphere than that provided by a court.

In some instances, divorcing spouses can work with a mediator who is both an experienced family law attorney and specially trained and certified as a mediator. The advantages flowing from those coupled qualifications are obvious and can serve a divorcing -- or already divorced -- couple well.

Source: Huffington Post, "Using mediation to keep your cool during divorce and beyond," Silvana D. Raso, Aug. 27, 2013

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