Can divorcing parents seek mediation for child custody matters?

On Behalf of | Aug 17, 2023 | Custody & Parenting

Mediation is known to help couples agree on many of the issues they face when divorcing. For example, it can help them reach a fair property distribution agreement without going through litigation.

Mediation can also be an effective way to settle other divorce issues, such as child custody. It is a low-conflict way to overcome disputes and create a parenting plan that helps your kids thrive after divorce.

What are the possible benefits?

A top benefit is that mediation can minimize the emotional impact of divorce on children. There are other potential benefits, including the following:

  • It’s more affordable than litigation.
  • It’s faster than going to court.
  • It promotes co-parent cooperation.
  • It’s less adversarial than litigation.
  • It improves parental communication.

Mediation allows parents to work together to find a solution that meets everyone’s needs, including their children’s. When parents work together to reach an agreement, it reassures kids that they are loved and supported during a monumental life change.

What are some tips for successful child custody mediation?

Preparation is nearly always critical for a successful mediation process. First, learn as much as possible about the laws in Washington to build a framework for success. From there, the tips below can be invaluable.

  • Make a list of contentious issues to negotiate.
  • Set realistic goals and expectations.
  • Be willing to compromise with your co-parent.
  • Listen to your co-parent and try to understand their concerns.
  • Choose a mediator experienced in handling child-related matters.

Although mediation may not work in every situation, it usually allows families to agree on issues that fall through the cracks during litigation. When properly overseen, mediation can lead to more harmony between you and your co-parent and help your children feel safe and reassured.

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