Although this blog has tried to clear up some of the mystery surrounding the divorce mediation process, many New Jersey residents may still have a number of questions about how mediation will work or what they should or should not do to prepare for a mediation.
Probably the most important thing to remember is that, even when a mediator is also an attorney, he or she is no substitute for a person’s own lawyer. Therefore, those who want to mediate are always encouraged to hire their own family law attorneys to help them understand the process and get through it while preserving their rights and interests, except of course when they voluntarily agree to surrender them as part of their negotiation with the other side.
Another important thing to remember is that a person need not shy away from mediation just because they have a hard time getting along with their spouse or because there is imbalance of power between the two parties.
An experienced and knowledgeable mediator should be able to spot high conflict cases or cases where one spouse is trying to overpower the other. The mediator should also know how to use particular techniques in order to prevent such issues from interfering with either the mediation process or the fairness of the final result.
Finally, it is also important to remember that mediation does not have to be an all or nothing proposition. Sometimes, a couple may be able to resolve most of their issues in a mediation but will have to leave one or two issues on the table for a judge to decide. This is perfectly acceptable during a mediation so long as both parties are comfortable with proceeding in such a manner.