If you are using mediation in order to obtain a divorce, you will have to file in court for your divorce. However, if you can reach a mutually agreeable resolution to all the property, financial, custody, parenting, and other issues that you are attempting to resolve, and the court accepts your settlement, it is unlikely that you will have to make many court appearances.
In divorce cases, mediators will recommend that each spouse be represented by his and her own divorce attorney. However, by using mediation, it is likely that you will use fewer legal services and that those you use will be different than if you did not use mediation. Your divorce lawyer will provide you with guidelines and legal counsel and can draft documents for filing with the court. Even when the mediator is a divorce lawyer, the mediator is not acting as a divorce lawyer and cannot represent either person in the divorce.
Brian James is an experienced divorce and family mediator with offices throughout Chicagoland and Southeastern Wisconsin. He runs a mediation practice, C.E.L. and Associates. He can be reached at (312) 524-5829. View his Divorce Magazine profile.