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Mediation vs. Litigation in Divorce: Which is Right for You?

 Posted on May 10, 2024 in Divorce

Wheaton Divorce Lawyer

Divorce is a major event in a person’s life that can put immense stress on the parties involved. Often, it brings forth various hard choices and complex decisions that must be made. Among these, choosing the path to resolving disputes – between mediation and litigation- can be one of the most significant. Understanding what these two processes involve can help you make well-informed decisions that fit the context of your situation. Discuss with an attorney in Illinois how both methods work and which may be right for you.

What is Mediation? 

Mediation is an alternative dispute resolution process that could serve as a viable option for couples who can find some common ground. This method involves a neutral third party (called a mediator) who helps steer discussions toward agreeable resolutions without imposing any decisions.

Mediation Offers Flexibility and Confidentiality

One of the hallmarks of mediation is its flexibility. The process allows couples to tailor outcomes to their unique circumstances. This could involve negotiating property division, child custody, and visitation rights. Furthermore, mediation is a confidential process since none of the proceedings will become a public record. That grants couples a level of privacy that litigation cannot offer.

What About Going the Route of Litigation? 

On the other hand, litigation involves taking the divorce proceedings to court. In a litigation scenario, a judge makes decisions after both parties present their arguments. Litigation is often preferable in instances where the relationship is severely strained, the case involves abuse, or when one party is financially or emotionally manipulative.

Litigation Features Public Proceedings and Final Rulings

In litigation, court proceedings are public, meaning any claims or allegations made by either party become part of the public record. While this may be undesirable for some, others may find comfort in the objective scrutiny of the court. In litigation, the judge’s ruling is final, offering a definitive end to the dispute. This binding nature, while limiting negotiation, helps ensure resolution.

Making the Choice that Makes the Most Sense for You

Choosing mediation and litigation depends largely on the circumstances of your situation. If you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse are able to communicate and even cooperate, mediation might be an attractive option, providing flexibility and privacy.

However, if relations are highly contentious, resulting in an inability to negotiate mutually agreeable terms, litigation would likely serve you better, providing the advantage of a definitive outcome.

Contact Our DuPage County, IL Divorce Attorneys 

No matter whether you choose litigation or mediation, our detail-oriented Wheaton, IL divorce lawyers with The Stogsdill Law Firm, P.C. can help. Contact 630-462-9500 for a private consultation today.

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