Empowering, Efficient and Effective Path to Divorce
The Mediator Guides but You Make the Decisions that Shape Your Future
Most people know friends or family who have ended their marriages through a difficult, drawn-out and expensive litigated divorce. One or both parties end up walking away feeling defeated and facing disheartening surprises about the distribution of property and other marital assets or about who is getting how much alimony and for how long.
Resources that could have been more equitably distributed through an out-of-court mediated settlement often end up covering attorney fees and other divorce-related costs when a judge dictates the terms of your settlement. In fact, in New Jersey the average cost of litigating in court for a married couple without children is $15,600*.
If child custody agreements and visitation schedules are also determined by a judge, along with the property settlement, the average fee in New Jersey for a divorce is $23,400.
By comparison, the average cost of a divorce through mediation in New Jersey, with or without a child custody agreement, is $3,500, not including the fees of your review attorneys or other professional services that you require.
Divorce Mediation offers an alternative approach to a litigated divorce with potential advantages for you and your family.
Is mediation right for you? Here’s what to ask yourself:
- Do you and your spouse want a direct say in your settlement agreement and parenting plan versus receiving a forced settlement and custody agreement that’s created by an attorney or judge?
- Are you and your spouse willing to work through difficult issues in your mediation sessions as they come up?
- Are you and your spouse open to learning and using the negotiation techniques recommended by your divorce mediator?
- Can you and your spouse commit to working with a neutral third-party mediator to create a Memorandum of Understanding that is most reasonable and equitable for everyone involved?
If you’ve answered “yes” to most, or all, questions, Divorce Mediation may be the best path for you. And Heidi Neuberg of A Mindful Mediation, LLC is ready to help you.
Heidi Neuberg, draws on her depth of experience as a Licensed Professional Counselor and Licensed Rehabilitation Counselor to adults, teens, families and couples, in her mediation practice. Heidi is professionally trained as a Divorce Mediator and uses Principled Negotiation Mediation, the gold standard approach to mediation developed at the Harvard Negotiation Project of Harvard University Law School.
Using the Mindful Mediation, LLC approach, Heidi will guide you through a confidential and thorough process to gather all pertinent information needed to draft the nonbinding Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) for you. The completed MOU will outline a customized settlement with no surprises for either party.
When children are involved, including the furry members of the family, Heidi guides parents to create a detailed, practical Parenting Plan where the well-being and best interests of your kids are always given the highest priority. When both parents are satisfied with the Parenting Plan and the MOU, Heidi will submit them to each party’s respective attorney who will prepare the legal Divorce Settlement Agreement.
Not to be overlooked: mediation can alleviate the significant stress and concerns about personal finances, living arrangements and even preliminary child custody that are inevitable once you’ve decided to divorce.
How? You and your spouse will be working through these very issues in your sessions with Heidi as you start to build your Memorandum of Understanding. You can begin to implement some of your decisions and observe how they are working for your family before the MOU is finalized.
Many couples find that mediation is an effective alternative to litigation in court for several reasons:
- Mediation empowers the divorcing couple and encourages them to bring their best to the table in order to create a customized agreement that is equitable, timely and in their family’s best interest
- Mediation promotes collaboration, fairness and efficiency
- Mediation circumvents lengthy and expensive interplay among attorneys and avoids litigation and trial
Mediation is efficient and saves you both time and money
However, you are always in control and you may stop the Mediation process and pursue professional counseling, reconciliation or proceed with a divorce through other professionals of your choice.
* Survey data presented in Martindale Nolo Research’s 2015 Divorce Study; 24/7 Wall St. determined the average cost of a divorce in each state.