Here are our top 5 reasons you may prefer mediation over litigation:
Generally speaking, heading to court is at least double the cost of the mediation process. Additionally, when you litigate, each party hires an attorney. With mediation, the parties equally share the costs unless they otherwise agree.
When you litigate, a judge decides your future. Judges have less time to consider the complexity of your family, and they are limited by statute from implementing more creative and flexible solutions. Court decisions will disappoint at least one side to a conflict if not both. Attempts to overturn or appeal such decisions are difficult. Appeals continue the cycle of stress. Moreover, appeals increase costs and delay resolution. When you mediate, however, you have more control, and you can craft a solution that works for your family.
Litigation frequently involves multiple court appearances to secure orders or other relief pending a final hearing on the merits of your dispute. It can take months to secure a date for a hearing, and often the court will grant continuances that delay resolution. This has been exacerbated by COVID-19. With mediation, your mediator can schedule regular meetings to address both the relational and material issues. He or she can explore creative approaches quickly, providing you with resolution sooner rather than later. This also saves you more time and money.
Trial preparation usually involves a complicated and expensive process called discovery to secure documents and information from the opposing party. In mediation, there is transparency between the parties and voluntary exchanges of all relevant information with exceptional accountability provided by the mediator.
There is no question that the courtroom is a formal and stressful environment. Stress can also emanate from the entire adversarial process (discovery, motions, hearings, etc.). The mediation process is more informal, flexible, and relaxed. The courtroom is adversarial, whereas mediation is collaborative.