What is Online Divorce Mediation?
Online divorce mediation is an increasingly popular option for couples who are looking to end their marriage in a more amicable and cost-effective way. This type of mediation takes place over the internet, allowing both parties to communicate with each other and a mediator without having to be physically present. The mediator will help the couple come to an agreement on issues such as child custody, division of assets, and spousal support.
How To Know If Online Divorce Mediation is Right for You
Before you decide if online divorce mediation is right for you, it's best to look at what divorce mediation is.
What is Divorce Mediation?
Divorce mediation is an alternative dispute resolution process in which a qualified, neutral divorce mediator helps divorcing couples reach mutually acceptable agreements about their:
- and childcare.
The goal of divorce mediation is to allow the couple to retain control over the terms and decisions that affect their long-term futures without having to go through a costly and lengthy litigation process.
Mediation enables both parties to communicate openly and honestly in order to come up with reasonable solutions that result in win-win outcomes for all involved. Online divorce mediation is everything divorce mediation is, but done online in private virtual meeting rooms.
What Is a Litigated Divorce?
A litigated divorce is a divorce that must be resolved in court. During this process, both spouses will go through a legal process handled by their respective divorce lawyers. This includes:
- submitting evidence
- questioning witnesses
- making final arrangements for assets and debts
- deciding on child custody
- and working with the court to come to a ruling.
The divorce process done through lawyers and court is costly and stressful. Couples that have an uncontested divorce usually prefer the online mediation process.
Benefits of Online Mediation Services
The main benefit of online divorce mediation is that it can be done anywhere you have wifi, making it much more convenient than traditional face-to-face mediation.
Online divorce mediation also allows couples to save money by avoiding costly travel expenses and court fees.
Additionally, online divorce mediation can provide a more relaxed atmosphere than traditional court proceedings, which can help reduce stress levels for both parties involved.
The Ability To Stay Physically Apart
Not all divorces are agreeable and easy- and sometimes having to "face" your spouse is overwhelming. With online divorce mediation, you never have to worry about seeing your spouse or even stress about being in the same building as them. This is especially important where domestic violence is part of the divorce.
How Does a Virtual Divorce Mediation Work?
Online divorce mediation is a convenient and cost-effective way to settle your divorce without going to court. It allows you and your spouse to work together with a neutral third party, the mediator, to come up with an agreement that works for both of you. The mediator helps facilitate communication between the two of you and can provide guidance on how to reach an agreement that meets both of your needs.
When considering online divorce mediation, you have two options: hiring an individual mediator or using an online divorce mediation service.
Hiring a Divorce Mediator
If you choose to hire an individual mediator, it’s important to research their background, qualifications, and personality so that they are the right fit for your situation.
Using an Online Divorce Mediation Service
On the other hand, if you decide to use a mediation service, read up on the company and its mediators’ qualifications before committing. The service might assign your case to a particular mediator based on your responses to some basic questions; this could be beneficial if you and your spouse don’t agree on who should mediate the process. In either case, the same mediator will likely handle your case from start to finish.
Online Divorce Mediation Platforms
Online mediation platforms are becoming increasingly popular as a way to resolve disputes without the need for physical meetings. These platforms provide a secure and convenient way for parties to communicate with each other and their mediator. Most of these programs are browser-based, meaning they can be accessed from any computer, tablet, or phone with an internet connection. This makes it easy for all parties involved to access the platform and participate in the mediation process.
The platform also provides a secure space for communication between the parties and their mediator. Once you create a profile in the program, you can use it to send notes and questions to your mediator as well as upload any documents needed for the mediation. It is important to ask whether other forms of communication such as emails, phone calls, or texts are available in addition to using the online platform. This will ensure that all parties have access to all necessary information during the mediation process.
Online Mediation Sessions
A typical mediation session works like this:
Private Virtual Rooms
Your divorce mediator will send you login information where you can access the virtual meeting room. This room will be different than your spouses, so you do not have to see each other. When your mediator comes into the room to discuss options, the room will alert you.
Once the mediation starts, the mediator will go back and forth between rooms, helping the two spouses come to a mutually beneficial agreement.
Once both parties reach an agreement, your divorce mediator will draft the documents for you to sign.
How Long Does the Online Mediation Process Take?
The online divorce mediation process can take anywhere from one session to multiple sessions over a few weeks. How long the mediation process takes depends on variables, such as:
- the number of topics to be addressed
- how complex those topics are (for example, if there's a lot of property to divide)
- the time between sessions, and
- the cooperation level of the spouses.
Get Started with Your Online Mediation
Divorce mediation is no longer the same tedious, time-consuming process it used to be. Thanks to advances in technology, couples can now access divorce mediation services from the comfort of their own homes. This means that couples can avoid the stress and expense of having to travel to a mediator’s office, as well as the added pressure of being in a physical space with their spouse while discussing sensitive topics.
Online divorce mediation allows couples to communicate with their mediator via video chat or phone call and even exchange documents electronically. This makes it easier for both parties to stay organized and on track during the process. Contact Michelle Bullock Law for an experienced online divorce mediator.