Mediation vs. Litigation in Divorce

judge's gavel on the table during a divorce

Pros and Cons of Mediation vs. Litigation for Divorce

Problem-solving is a common issue in divorce matters. Divorce in itself is a problem that must be solved.

Divorcing spouses often choose to take their case to court and let a judge decide what happens, whereas others choose to reach agreements without going to court. You undoubtedly want to make the best decision for you and your family and make the process as seamless as possible, but how?

Depending on your particular situation, you may consider mediation or litigation for your Texas divorce. Both options involve different approaches to the same goal: Resolving your divorce. However, each method has certain benefits and disadvantages that you should understand before deciding which route to take.

In short, litigation is perceived as a less desirable solution compared to mediation. But it ultimately depends on your unique case.

Understanding Divorce Litigations

Over the years, litigation has become the “last-resort” option for countless divorcing spouses in the US. Couples who choose divorce litigation tend to do so because of the following factors:

  • They cannot work together in a civil and polite manner
  • No matter how hard they try, spouses can’t agree on certain things
  • One spouse is a domestic violence victim
  • There is a general imbalance in the relationship

As you can see, litigation could help spouses who fall under any of the above categories. While these benefits are important to recognize, it’s equally important to know the downfalls of litigation in divorce matters. The problems with divorce litigation could include, but are not limited to:

  • Expensive
  • Lengthy
  • No control of the outcome
  • Inconvenient
  • Involves intense paperwork, meetings, and legal proceedings
  • Can emotionally traumatize spouses and their children

Should I Use a Mediator for Divorce?

Litigation isn’t for everyone, and mediation is no exception. Mediation is a favorable option for divorcing spouses who can work together efficiently and amicably. Spouses who cannot communicate or refuse to cooperate with mediation may find litigation necessary.

Mediation is a popular alternative to going to court for many reasons, such as:

  • More affordable
  • Informal
  • Faster
  • Full control of the outcome
  • Accessible from anywhere (for online mediations)
  • Confidential

A mediator is an unbiased, third-party professional who facilitates mediation sessions to help divorcing spouses reach agreements on their own terms and at their own pace. They do not make any decisions for the spouses, giving both parties full discretion in the outcome of their issue. Not to mention, mediations are generally confidential, with the final judgment being the only public record. Litigation

Keep in mind that not all mediators are lawyers, although, many mediators are both. Regardless, a mediator’s job is to help disputing spouses reach agreements on certain issues in the divorce. While it would be nice, mediators do not ensure those agreements are fair.

What Is the Difference Between Mediation & Litigation?

With all the above points in mind, you can see that mediation is a faster, cheaper, informal, and more favorable resolution for divorce. On the other hand, litigation is typically more expensive, lengthy, public, formal, and messy altogether. While this may sound like mediation is better than divorce litigation, the bottom line is it depends on your individual situation.

No two spouses are exactly the same, so you should speak to an attorney to get a better idea of what may work for you. We invite you to contact Goline & Roland Law Firm, PLLC at (940) 400-0475 for answers to your questions!

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