Divorce mediation in California: What you need to know

On Behalf of | May 20, 2022 | Divorce & Legal Separation |

When it comes to divorce in California, there are many different ways to go about it. You could try to handle everything on your own, hire an attorney and go through the court system or perhaps mediation. In this short guide, let’s look at what divorce mediation is and how it works.

What is divorce mediation?

Divorce mediation is a process where separating couples work with a mediator to come up with a settlement that works for them. This person doesn’t take sides or advise you on what to do; rather, their job is to facilitate your discussions.

How does divorce mediation work in California?

Mediation comes in when you are trying to have an uncontested divorce, but there are one or two things that you can’t seem to agree on with your soon-to-be-ex. It’s advisable to hire a lawyer during this process; however, some people decide to go through with it without one.

For mediation to work, you must be honest with each other and reveal a full picture of your assets, debts, and goals for your divorce. As you may know, California is a community property state for marital assets. In simpler terms, everything you or your spouse acquired or helped build belongs to the both of you, regardless of who worked more or invested smarter.

You will start this process by finding a neutral third-party professional trained in guiding couples through their separation. Meet with this person separately to discuss your goals for the divorce. You will each provide all the necessary documents the mediator needs to have a clear picture of your situation. Then he or she will sit you down together with your lawyers and facilitate your discussions until you reach an agreement. Then the mediator will draft up a settlement agreement, which they will submit to the court for approval.

Divorce mediation is gaining popularity in California. This is because it is a quicker and less expensive option and allows you to have more control over the outcome of your separation.