Divorce mediation is a tool used by many Texas attorneys to facilitate settlement in their cases. Divorce mediation in Texas encourages the parties to create their own agreement to finalize their dispute. For example, the parties may decide how they wish to divide their property and how time with their children will be divided. Divorce mediation allows the parties to remain in control of the outcome of their case.
The timing of divorce mediation will vary from case to case. If mediation is scheduled late in the case, the parties may be so frustrated and set in their ways that they will not consider compromising and settling their differences. In this situation, the mediator must declare an impasse, or a “deadlock,” for the session. If mediation is scheduled too early in the case, there may not be adequate information available to make an informed decision about terms of a settlement.
At some point after a divorce case is filed, the parties might exchange what is called discovery. During the discovery process, the parties, through their attorneys, send requests for information to each other. These requests may be for certain documents, or they may be lists of questions that the other party must answer. Regardless, these documents are almost always necessary before a settlement may be reached. For example, in most cases, the parties cannot decide how to divide a piece of property without having sufficient information about the property’s value.
Therefore, the best time to schedule mediation is after the parties have exchanged all necessary information about the issues in the case. This ensures that the parties have enough information in front of them at mediation to settle. Since mediated agreements often become part of a divorce order, it is imperative that the parties understand the terms they are agreeing to.