This is the next post in my series discussing how Las Vegas fathers on a budget may retain counsel for their divorce or child custody cases. My last post explained why it is important to have an explicit conversation with your family law attorney outlining what you can and cannot afford to pay in regards to services. This post will present the possibility of mediation and explain how a father can decide if the option is right for them.
Mediation is a fair and cost effective option for Las Vegas couples willing to part amicably
Mediation is a cost effective tool that essentially helps couples in dispute avoid the Court process and hammer out a fair agreement with a third party. The third party mediator may or may not be an attorney and does not represent either party. In a mediation the agreed upon mediator essentially takes both parties’ wishes and arguments into consideration and then makes the most fair decision based on the law. This process helps both parties avoid having to pay attorneys fees that would otherwise include court appearances, discovery, and trial. It also helps resolve matters quickly as most mediations will be completed in the same day.
The biggest factor that can be difficult for a couple considering mediation is it requires both parties to put their anger and hurt feelings aside enough to compromise. In any good mediation, both parties will walk away with some of what they wanted, but most likely not everything. This can be a tough pill to swallow. Mediation is not for the person who wants to “take everything” from their former partner. For a Las Vegas father who is considering mediation, it is important to remember this; as Nevada is a community property state, and the Courts default to joint custody in child custody cases, most of the times mediation will produce the same results as going through a trial would anyway. The difference is, one will pay less money and can move on more quickly.
Mediation is not for cases involving abuse or significant disputes
With that being said, there are cases in which mediation is not ideal. If domestic violence existed during the relationship, or there is any history of child abuse or neglect, then mediation is not appropriate. Mediation is also not appropriate in cases in which the couple has an extreme dispute, for example in a child relocation case. When considering mediation, one must consider the cost- benefit analysis, and decide whether they will gain more by going to trial. While the majority of cases can be handled, there are times when trial is the best option in order to protect one’s self. A good family law attorney will be willing to discuss with you the pros and cons and help you make a decision that is right for you. Contact our Las Vegas fathers’ rights attorney today for a consultation and to discuss your options.