Mediation or Arbitration in New Jersey

As your Attorney, it’s my job to present you with as many viable options as possible for reaching a successful outcome in your pending divorce case. And while my primary expertise lies in litigation, it’s important to note that you have options. Specifically, the three primary forms of dispute resolution in a divorce case are (1) litigation, (2) mediation, and (3) arbitration. Below please find some objective information for you regarding (2), and (3), the options outside of litigation.

WHAT DOES MEDIATION INVOLVE?

Mediation is a process where you and your spouse meet with an individual, the mediator, for as long as necessary to identify and resolve the issues existing between you. Once an agreement is reached, the mediator writes it up, and may recommend that each of you take it to a lawyer for review.

For some couples, negotiating directly with each other, even with the help of a mediator, is not possible -- either because of problems in the relationship (such as domestic violence or substance abuse) or because a spouse is simply unwilling to mediate. Even if you decide to go this route, I would strongly recommend that you hire a lawyer like myself in a limited capacity to consult with you outside of the mediation. Many mediating spouses find it helpful to work with a lawyer who can offer legal advice and review the settlement agreement before it is signed.

I also encourage you to consider the cost implications here. While a divorce mediator may charge you less than a lawyer would, you and your spouse should each still have a lawyer (not the same lawyer) review the mediated agreement you have reached. That means that together, you will be paying the mediator and two lawyers, rather than just two lawyers, if you had not gone to the mediator. You may still save money because the lawyers' work should be minimized as a result of the work the mediator already did. In other words, you may be paying three people, but the total fees may be less than if you had paid two.

ARBITRATION

In divorce arbitration, you and your spouse agree that you’ll hire a private judge, called an arbitrator, to make the same decisions that a judge would make, and that you will honor these decisions as if a judge had made them.

Arbitration tends to be a beneficial dispute resolution method for divorce disputes between parties that are unlikely to effectively mediate or who do not wish to be subjected to the higher expense and time commitment that going to trial will likely involve. It’s good for people that just “want it done, over with,” as arbitration is much faster than court litigation. It simply requires that the parties and the arbitrator agree on a date.

It’s important to note that unlike mediation, divorce arbitration does not lead to a mutual agreement. It leads to a third-party making a decision for the disputing parties. One or both people may be unhappy with the decision that the arbitrator arrived at. This is similar to litigation, except in divorce litigation the decision can be appealed. In arbitration, it cannot.

WHY I’M THE RIGHT ATTORNEY TO HELP YOU DECIDE ON THE BEST WAY TO PROCEED WITH YOUR DIVORCE

It starts with having the right experience. I have extensive experience in all areas of family law, and most importantly, I have your best interest at heart. This helps me make guide you in making the best decision for your specific case.

But don’t just take it from me: Click here to read testimonials from my family law clients.

WHERE DO I PRACTICE FAMILY LAW?

My law office is based in Livingston, NJ. I serve all New Jersey Counties including Essex, Morris, Bergen, Passaic, Hudson, Sussex, Warren, Union, Middlesex, Ocean, Monmouth and any other county I am needed.

In short, I won’t let geography stand in the way of helping you, and I’m more than ready to take your case! I’ll travel to where you need me. If you’d like to schedule a free appointment, click here, or call me now at (973)-315-3232