Like many other things, divorce in Texas is a bit different than in other states. One of the most obvious differences is that Texas is one of the few remaining community property states, so property division during divorce does not proceed as it would in Tennessee, for instance.
More specifically, Texas is one of very few states that requires divorce mediation when child custody or visitation issues are contested during a divorce (except where there are allegations of abuse or domestic violence).
Mediation can be a very helpful tool, and there's no need to wait for a court mandated reason to use it. In fact, for many couples, mediation is the best path through divorce, allowing them to keep the children they love at the heart of the process.
Children are often the greatest victims of divorce, but your children don't have to be. If you and your spouse are willing to work together for the good of your children, you can achieve a successful divorce that is often less expensive than traditional litigation, without ever stepping foot in a courtroom.
A mediator keeps things fair for all parties
In a traditional divorce scenario, two opposing teams of attorneys fight each other for the best interests of their respective clients. This is effective, and often necessary, if one side or the other is unwilling to act reasonably.
Contrastingly, in mediation, parties sit down at a neutral location with a professionally neutral mediator. The mediator understands the full scope of the legal issues that must resolve in the negotiation, and also understands how to ensure that each party wins and sacrifices fairly to reach mutually equitable agreements, especially when it concerns children.
This does not mean you cannot or should not employ your own attorney, but simply keeps the playing field level and aims to keep the negotiations fair without preference for one party or another.
While mediation is helpful for divorcing couples in many different scenarios, those with children can reap additional benefits that can pay dividends for years to come.
A mediator protects children first
When you use a mediator to mediate your divorce with children, you make a very specific statement to your family and community that you put your children first above your own privileges and comfort.
A mediator walking with a family through the divorce process understands that what one parent or another wants, or is even rightfully entitled to, is not as important as what is best for the children in the family.
A good mediator requires that both parents sacrifice for the sake of their children, and also gives parents great opportunities to display hard lessons to their children about love and responsibility.
Not only may you save significantly over the cost of traditionally litigated divorce by avoiding a courtroom, you may save yourself thousands in future therapy costs because you chose to love your children well in this difficult season.
Don't wait to set the tone for your divorce
Just because you and your spouse want a divorce doesn't mean that your children should lose any depth of relationship with either of you. With the help of a mediator, you can preserve your relationships with the children you love, and demonstrate that divorce doesn't have to be the ugly, mean thing it's often presented to be.
The guidance of an experienced mediator can help ensure that all parties' rights remain secure as you navigate this hard time and look forward to a fresh start.
Source: Nov. 30, -0001