431 Williamsburg Avenue
Geneva, IL 60134


3 Scenarios Where Divorce Mediation May Not Be Ideal

 Posted on June 16, 2024 in Divorce

Geneva, IL divorce mediation lawyerMediation can be a great way to resolve your differences outside of court. Most couples who go through mediation during a divorce are able to agree on a settlement without having to litigate their divorce in court, which can be more time-consuming and costly. Because it is so effective, judges often order couples to attend mediation after they file for divorce.

But is mediation always ideal? There are certain situations where mediation may not be the best course of action, as this article will discuss. If you are about to go through a divorce, ask your Illinois divorce attorney whether mediation is right for you.

What Is Mediation?

Mediation is a process where two parties try to resolve their dispute through negotiation. The negotiations are coordinated by a mediator, who is a neutral third party trained in negotiation and chosen by the court. Mediators are often former judges who use the knowledge and experience they have from the bench to help people resolve their disagreements.

In mediation, the mediator first meets with both parties together. He or she then moves each party to a separate room and meets with each one separately, trying to get each party to compromise. If a compromise is reached, the mediator will draft a settlement agreement for the parties to sign.

While this process is often successful, there are three scenarios in which it is not practical.

When a Spouse Has a History of Abuse

One scenario in which mediation is not ideal is if one of the spouses has a history of abuse. This can include:

  • Physical abuse

  • Sexual abuse

  • Emotional abuse

  • Verbal abuse

In any of these cases, the abused spouse has suffered trauma. Therefore, there is likely a power imbalance between the two parties, which is not conducive to compromise. It is also not appropriate to force someone to sit in a room and make compromises with his or her abuser.

When a Spouse is Uncooperative

Even when spouses strongly disagree on every issue, it is a good sign when they both agree to attend mediation. But if a spouse is not even willing to sit down at the negotiating table, it is usually a sign that mediation is not the right path forward.

When High-Value Assets Are Involved

Another situation where mediation may not be appropriate is if there are many high-value assets that need to be divided between spouses in a divorce. In such a case, the chances of a spouse trying to hide assets are higher. Financial specialists and forensic accountants may need to be involved to help with the property division. Mediation is not designed to handle that level of complexity.

Contact a Geneva, IL Divorce Lawyer

Mediation is an effective tool for resolving disputes, but it is not appropriate for all divorces. The best way to know if mediation is right for you is to consult a Kane County, IL divorce lawyer. At Serrano Hanson, we are extremely protective of your interests and we will not push you towards a solution that does not work for you. Schedule a consultation with one of our attorneys and we will help you decide whether mediation or litigation is the best way to achieve your goals. Call 630-844-8781 today. Se habla español. 

Share this post:
Illinois state bar association kane county bar association dupage county bar association dekalb bar association
Back to Top