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Houston Divorce Mediation Lawyer – Cost, Fees How Long it Takes…

The mediation process is usually informal and might be handled by teleconference. The two spouses and their attorneys are placed in separate rooms and normally do not talk to one another. The mediator talks to each side separately and the mediation session typically goes as follows:

BEST HOUSTON DIVORCE MEDIATION LAWYERAt Von Dohlen Law Firm, we’ve seen just how stressful the legal process can be for those going through divorce. That’s why we strive to simplify the issues for all parties involved, and the mediation process is one of the easiest ways to do this.

When two opposing parties reach an agreement regarding their divorce, they don’t have to let a random judge dictate their future. Unfortunately, it can be difficult for former partners to reach such a resolution between themselves. That’s exactly why we offer our client guidance through the mediation process. why we offer a collaborative divorce process at Von Dohlen Law Firm. Contact us today to learn how we can help.

What Is Divorce Mediation in Texas?

Mediation is a form of alternative dispute resolution. This means it allows two parties in a legal matter — such as divorce — to deal with their issues outside of a courtroom. It’s a collaborative-type law process that involves a divorce mediator who acts as a neutral third party. This mediator does not represent either of the divorcing parties. Rather, they help all parties involved work together to reach a solution. Agreeing on major issues can be difficult during a divorce, so having a third party to guide the discussion can prove invaluable.

Whether you hire a Houston divorce mediation attorney or a licensed mediator without a law license, the mediation process will typically go as follows:

  • Orientation: The mediator describes the process to both parties. The mediator will explain that the process is confidential, and any agreements made are binding in the court case.
  • Information gathering and issue identification: The parties involved can let the mediator know about any divorce-related issues they may want to be resolved. The mediator will gather all necessary information (e.g., financials).
  • Negotiation: The mediator will guide the discussion to help the parties come to an agreement on issues such as property division, child custody, alimony, and other pressing matters.

One important thing to remember is that you’re not required to reach an agreement during the mediation process. While this approach is certainly an ideal way to handle family law issues, it’s possible that you may not be able to work out any issues. You may also be able to reach an agreement on 99% of matters but still have a few disagreements. In such situations, going to court is still an option. However, anything you consent to in a signed mediated settlement agreement will have the force of law behind it.

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What Are the Benefits of Hiring an Attorney to Help with Mediation?

If this is the first time you’ve considered mediation for your divorce case, it’s understandable that you have questions. Of course, what you’re likely most concerned about is the benefits of mediation over litigation. After all, you want to take the approach that’s right for you. At Von Dohlen Law Firm, you can hire an attorney to represent your interests alone. If you seek us out for the services of a divorce mediation lawyer in Houston, however, you’ll get all the following benefits over litigation.

  • Lower costs: Family law issues can turn expensive in court. There’s no telling how long a trial might drag on, and this means heightened legal costs. A mediator can help you achieve an uncontested divorce prior to ever stepping before a judge.
  • Faster resolution: It’s rare for a litigated divorce to finish in a timely manner. These things can drag out in court. If you handle all contested issues during mediation, however, the judge can merely approve your agreement and issue a final divorce decree.
  • Personalized approach: When a Texas court decides major issues in family law, you won’t always have a say in how things play out. This can take control completely out of your hands. A divorce mediator in Houston can help you take a more personalized approach.
  • Keep things private: Every issue revealed during divorce litigation becomes a matter of public record. This can be damaging to everyone involved. Mediation takes a more private approach and allows issues to be resolved without public exposure.

These are some of the biggest advantages of choosing mediation over litigation, but this list is far from exhaustive. Coming to an agreement on issues like spousal support, property division, and child support may seem impossible on your own — and having a judge decide such matters can result in an outcome where no one feels like they’ve won. Avoiding the stress of litigation is often enough to justify this alternative dispute resolution process. If you still have questions, however, contact a divorce mediation lawyer in Houston today at Von Dohlen Law Firm.

When Is Divorce Mediation Not an Option?

Using mediation to reach an amicable resolution for both you and your former partner is a great thing. And in reality, hiring a mediator is always an option. However, there are times when mediation may not be the appropriate approach for your case. Family law issues can prove tenuous, and even experienced mediation lawyers cannot help solve all problems when certain conditions exist. If you find yourself in any of the following situations, litigation may be the only recourse:

  • Bad faith actions: Are you concerned your spouse may try to hide assets or otherwise disrupt the divorce process? If so, reaching out to a law group for individual representation is likely the right approach. Mediation only works if both parties are honest.
  • Domestic abuse: If domestic violence, intimidation, bullying, or other forms of abuse are occurring, you should seek an attorney-client relationship of your own. Mediation doesn’t work if one party feels intimidated or like they can’t be honest.
  • Mental health issues: Is one spouse suffering from mental health or drug-related issues? If so, it’s likely in your best interest to get your own attorneys. Disputes often cannot be settled amicably if one party is not fully capable of negotiation.

If none of these situations exist, hiring a Texas divorce mediator can prove extremely beneficial. And while you don’t have to choose a law attorney to act as a mediator, doing so is wise since they have an in-depth knowledge of the law. At Von Dohlen Law Firm, we focus on family law and simplifying otherwise difficult issues. Let our entire staff serve you and help you through this difficult time. At our law firm, you’ll have a divorce mediation lawyer in Houston who can help you resolve important matters. We can even file the necessary paperwork after your mediation to get a final decree for your divorce in a timely manner.

Contact a Divorce Mediation Lawyer in Houston Today

A litigated divorce is never going to be constructive. Sure, you might walk away feeling like you’ve “won” — but have you really? The time and effort necessary to fight out a divorce in court can literally shorten your life span, and in reality, creating an untenable relationship with your former partner is never healthy. This is particularly true if children are involved. By using the mediation process as a form of alternative dispute resolution, however, you can work towards a divorce decree that’s beneficial for all parties involved.

At Von Dohlen Law Firm, you’ll find a neutral third party that’s willing to help you reach an agreement regarding all the major issues in your divorce. The collaborative process offers benefits that are simply unavailable with litigation, and even if divorcing spouses are simply able to avoid the stress of court, this process is well worth the effort. Contact us today by calling our law office at (713) 844-8396 to schedule your initial consultation. With a divorce mediation lawyer in Houston on your side, there’s no need for the end of your relationship to be more stressful or tenuous than necessary.

Houston Divorce Mediation FAQ

Divorce mediation in Texas, like in many places, can vary in duration, cost, and process based on several factors, including the complexity of the divorce issues, the willingness of both parties to negotiate, and the specific procedures of the mediation service or mediator.

How long does divorce mediation take in Texas?

The duration of divorce mediation can vary. Typically, mediation sessions can last from a few hours to a full day, and it might take multiple sessions to resolve all issues. On average, the entire mediation process can take anywhere from a few weeks to several months, depending on the complexity of the divorce case and the level of disagreement between the parties.

How much does mediation cost in Texas?

The cost of mediation in Texas can vary depending on the mediator’s fees and the length of the mediation sessions. Mediators may charge an hourly rate or a flat fee. Hourly rates can range widely, often between $100 to $300 per hour or more. Some mediators may also charge for preparation time and other expenses. It’s important to discuss fees with the mediator before starting the process. Often, the cost of mediation is split between the parties.

What happens if my spouse doesn’t show up for mediation?

If one spouse fails to show up for a scheduled mediation session, the mediation might be rescheduled, or the mediator may report the non-attendance to the court. Depending on the circumstances and local court rules, the court may take certain actions, such as ordering the absent spouse to appear, proceeding with the mediation without them, or considering their absence when making final decisions in the divorce.

What is the divorce mediation process in Houston, Texas?

In Houston, the divorce mediation process generally follows these steps:

  • Selection of a Mediator: Both spouses agree on a neutral third-party mediator.
  • Initial Meeting: The mediator meets with both spouses to understand the issues and set ground rules for the mediation process.
  • Negotiation Sessions: The spouses and mediator engage in negotiation sessions to discuss and resolve issues such as property division, child custody, and support. These sessions can be joint or separate.
  • Resolution: If the parties reach an agreement, the mediator drafts a settlement agreement, which both spouses review and sign.
  • Finalization: The agreement is then submitted to the court for approval and incorporated into the final divorce decree.