The following New Jersey divorce mediation case scenario highlights some of the significant issues that often arise during divorce and illustrates why divorce mediation is a much more successful option than litigation.
A resident of Northern New Jersey, Ray is a hardworking employee in a New Jersey company who strived for upward mobility. He is regarded by his colleagues as intelligent, loyal and senior management material. He is a family man, immensely proud of his two children. Ray and his wife, Kathy were married for fifteen years when his whole world was turned upside down on him. One evening after the children were put to bed, Kathy approached Ray and told him that she had it with the marriage and was going to file for a divorce; marriage counseling had failed to solve their differences. Kathy told him that her lawyer had advised her that divorce mediation was a less costly and less time consuming alternative to divorce litigation. Kathy gave Ray a choice, "either we go to a divorce mediator or I'm filing the divorce papers". Ray was devastated and very angry. Why should he cooperate with Kathy and make divorce easier for her? After all, she was the one who wanted out of the marriage.
He decided to research Northern New Jersey divorce mediation on the internet and concluded that using a NJ divorce mediator was more expedient than litigation. Afterwards, he sat in the study dejected and alone. He felt like he was facing a dilemma. If he chose divorce mediation, the marriage would end sooner and he would be the likely one to move out of the marital residence. Even worse he thought, he would probably only be able to see his children every other weekend. On the other hand, going through a lengthy divorce battle in court could financially ruin him as it did his friend Casey. In addition, the divorce litigation strained Casey's relationship with his six-year old daughter, and alienated him from his teenage daughter. Ray felt he was in a no-win situation.
The following day, Ray contacted Montclair Divorce Mediation and discussed his situation with divorce mediator, Nicholas De Metro. Ray decided along with Kathy to attend an initial divorce mediation consultation. At the beginning of the meeting, Ray and Kathy provided information about their assets, debt, children and lifestyles to Mr. De Metro. Immediately after this, Mr. De Metro got the couple to start talking to each other in a civil manner. Ray accepted that the marriage was over, but expressed concern that he was going to take all the "hits" in this divorce, after all, Kathy was the one who wanted out. Kathy was frustrated with Ray's behavior and stated that maybe she should just file for divorce. Tension rose between the couple and communication started to break down.
Mr. De Metro, using his divorce mediation skills, calmed the couple down and began utilizing a process that enabled them to focus on what was most important to them. They quickly responded that the most important reason for trying the divorce mediation process was that their children's best interests were most significant to them, now and in the future. Ray expressed his concern that he didn't want to miss a lot of time away from the children. He was also nervous about losing all of the couple's savings in a litigated divorce. Kathy expressed that she wanted to move forward with her life and realized that litigation would impede her desire to do so. After several sessions of divorce mediation, Kathy and Ray, with the assistance of Nicholas De Metro, successfully reconciled their differences by identifying each issue that was important to them, explored the options that best addressed their concerns, fairly divided their assets and debts, and most importantly, agreed upon a parenting plan which allowed both parents to maintain quality relationships with their children.
As a result of the couple investigating and utilizing the assistance of a trained New Jersey divorce mediator, they were able to arrive at a fair and reasonable settlement that gave each of them peace of mind. Today, Ray and Kathy have a congenial relationship with each other and their children are thriving since they don't have to see mom and dad fighting anymore. As an added benefit, the cost of the divorce was a mere fraction of what it would have been if they had chose litigation. In fact, during the divorce mediation process, the couple decided that the money they saved by using Montclair Divorce Mediation was to be placed into the children's college fund.