Hiring a Family Law Attorney When Adopting a Child

The Importance Of A Divorce Lawyer During Mediation

by Jamie Nichols

If you're planning to settle your divorce in mediation, you might need a lawyer for the process. Here are some great reasons why you should always have a lawyer on hand to assist you during mediation. 

A Mediator Cannot Give Advice

One thing that you may not realize is that a mediator is supposed to be a neutral party during mediation. They are not going to take sides and help either person get a better result in the divorce than the other person. This means that you are not going to be able to ask the mediator for legal advice. Even if they recognize that you are not getting a fair deal in what is being agreed to, they cannot let you know. A lawyer is going to work on your behalf to ensure that you are getting a fair deal, and call things out that are wrong when they see them.

A Lawyer Can Advise You Of Your Rights

Coming up with a divorce settlement during mediation isn't just about what you and your spouse agree on. It's also based on the law and what you have a right to receive. A mediator is not going to let you know if you give something up that you have a right to receive, but a lawyer definitely will. A lawyer advises you of your rights so that you know when you have leverage on a specific issue. 

A Lawyer Prepares The Paperwork For Your Case

You may not be aware that the mediator is not allowed to prepare the divorce paperwork based on what you agree on. Instead, they create a memorandum of understanding, which lists the terms that you agreed on with your spouse. A lawyer can take that memorandum of understanding and turn it into a settlement agreement since you likely do not know what to do. You may be wondering, why not just hire a lawyer at the end of the process? Your lawyer is going to likely raise red flags about the memorandum of understanding when they receive it, which can cause you to go back to mediation. Wouldn't it be best if you could just avoid the issues in the first place? Bring a lawyer into mediation to streamline the process.

Looking for more reasons why it's worth having a lawyer on your side during mediation? Reach out to a local family lawyer in your area and schedule a consultation to learn more about their services.