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The Pros and Cons of Mediation vs. Litigation for Texas Divorce

 Posted on September 05, 2023 in Family Law

Dallas, TX divorce lawyerDivorce is a difficult and emotional process, no matter where you live. In Texas, there are two main ways to go about getting a divorce: mediation and litigation.

Mediation is a process in which a neutral third party, called a mediator, helps two people agree on the terms of their divorce. This option is typically less expensive and time-consuming than litigation, and it can help to preserve the relationship between the divorcing couple.

Litigation is the process of going to court to have a judge decide the terms of your divorce. It is more expensive and time-consuming than mediation, and it can be more emotionally draining. However, litigation may be the only option if you and your spouse cannot agree on the terms of your divorce.

If you are considering the pros and cons of mediation versus litigation, it may be time to consult a divorce attorney. A Texas attorney can help navigate the complexities of divorce and help offer a solution on how best to come to terms.

Cost and Time Concerns of Mediation vs. Litigation

One of the pros of mediation is that it is typically much less expensive than litigation. In Texas, the cost of mediation is much more flexible than litigation and you can pay a private mediator the amount of time you can afford. Many private mediators offer packages that allow a divorce to be completed for well under $10,000. 

The cost of litigation can vary wildly based on a few factors, such as your attorney’s time, how complex the divorce is, and the number of issues contested. Mediation can also be much less time-consuming than litigation. The average mediation lasts around three months but can take as little as a single day to complete, whereas the average litigation can take several months or years.

Is Mediation More Fair than Litigation?

Mediation can help to reach an agreement that is fair to both parties by allowing them to discuss their needs and concerns openly. The mediator can also help the couple to brainstorm creative solutions to their problems. On the other hand, litigation is not as flexible as mediation because the judge’s decisions are legally binding and both spouses may not like a judge’s decisions. This can be a problem in cases where the couple has complex assets or debts.

Is Mediation More Likely to Be Successful than Litigation?

Possibly the biggest negative of mediation is that it is not always successful. If the couple is unable to reach an agreement, they may need to go to court for litigation. Litigation can be more effective in cases involving high conflict or domestic violence because the judge can issue orders that are enforceable by the court. If mediation is unsuccessful, litigation may be the only option to resolve the divorce.

Will My Rights Be Protected?

As the mediator is not a judge, they do not have the same authority to make decisions. This means that mediation may not be as effective as litigation in protecting the rights of one party or the other. You will still need an attorney to help you when you pursue mediation. Litigation can help to ensure that the rights of both parties are protected because a judge will make the decisions based on the law.

Is Mediation or Litigation Better for Getting Along?

If you are looking to preserve the relationship between you and your spouse, then mediation can help. Mediation can encourage communication and cooperation with one another. This can be especially important if children are involved. Litigation can be more emotionally draining than mediation because it can be a very adversarial process. It can also damage the relationship between the divorcing couple.

Contact a Dallas, TX Divorce Attorney

So, which option is the right one? The best way to decide whether mediation or litigation is right for you is to speak with an experienced Fort Worth, TX, divorce lawyer. An attorney like the one at Clark Law Group can help you understand the pros and cons of each option and develop a plan that is best for your circumstances. Call the office at 469-906-2266 today to set up a reasonably-priced consultation and discuss your options.

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