In mediation, I help divorcing couples work through the details of their settlements. Most areas for decision making: parenting, property and support are generally the same for the vast majority of couples. After a session or two, however, the distinct needs of each family become clear and the discussions become tailored and personal. The family home, plans for the children, dividing hard earned savings, are conversational material that takes on unique contours for every couple. The end result of those discussions is and should be a final Separation Agreement unlike any other.
The process of divorce mediation often starts the same way: collect financial information, prepare budgets and begin to map the best way forward. Along the way, while the finer points of the law are introduced into the discussion and the nuances of the life-style choices and preferences of the individuals are better defined, the foundation of a personalized guiding document begins to take shape.
For example, when discussing spousal support, discussions around needs and income together with projections about the future are naturally different for every family. The details of how much support and for how long are questions with many possible answers. In mediation, the goal is to get creative, look at the details and emerge with a formula that feels fair to all and that will endure.
I recently mediated and then drafted a Separation Agreement that was quite long. The needs of the couple dictated that several modifications in support be built in over the course of several years. The changes in support were triggered by the passage of time but also conditioned on specific changes in income. It took time to work out the details but in the end, the couple has an agreement that will help them navigate their future.
If you would like to learn more about creating a Separation Agreement that addresses the particular needs of your family, please contact me for a no fee consultation.