Does the Mediator Represent Us in the Divorce?
When you decide to mediate your divorce, it is best to know in what capacity your mediator can help you. The typical role of the divorce attorney is someone who represents you and only you in your case, who advocates on only your behalf, and who advises you on what you should do in your case.
The role of a mediator is very different, even though both professionals will ultimately assist you with your divorce. The divorce mediator does not act as your representation in a divorce case. Some mediators are also practicing divorce attorneys, but cannot represent either you or your spouse when in the role of mediator. Attorneys have an ethical duty toward their clients. Because of this duty, it is unethical for an attorney to represent two people in a case when those two people are posed against each other.
Despite the very personal nature of divorce, a contested divorce case is one spouse against the other. In an uncontested divorce, where both spouses agree on all issues in the divorce, sole representation may not be necessary. Divorce mediators facilitate productive negotiations between two spouses. You and your spouse will still have to appear in court at a final hearing, but you are permitted under Massachusetts law torepresent yourself in your case. Many people choose to have a divorce attorney review their
Agreement prior to signing it. This allows the chance for an unbiased eye to look for any decisions in the Agreement that may not be fair or reasonable to both spouses.
Your mediator cannot represent you and your spouse in your divorce, but he or she can make hiring separate attorneys unnecessary. Working with an experienced Massachusetts divorce mediator can help ensure your Agreement is fair and reasonable. You can also have an attorney review your Separation Agreement before you sign it. Mediation helps spouses divorce together rather than against each other. An amicable mediation can also ensure you and your spouse do not harbor any animosity or resentment after the divorce, which is an unfortunate side effect of hiring separate attorneys and taking your divorce through the litigation process.
If you have questions about the divorce process, contact Mediation Advantage Services for expert family law help. Experienced in complex divorce mediation,Polly A. Tatum can help you and your spouse mediate your divorce saving you the stress and costs of litigation. Based in historic Worcester with a satellite office in Northboro, MA, our firm serves all cities and towns throughout Massachusetts and Worcester County including, Auburn, Paxton, Leicester, Sutton, Grafton, Shrewsbury, Westboro, Northboro, Southboro, Holden, Sterling, Princeton, Worcester, Charlton, Millbury, Dudley, Spencer, Brookfield, Sudbury, Natick, Framingham, Hopkinton, Milford, Blackstone, Leominster, Fitchburg, Acton, Jefferson, Barre, Oakham, Cambridge, Newton, Marlboro, Lancaster, Bolton, and Hudson. Call our office at (508) 795-1557, fill out our online form, or email us at [email protected] today to schedule your Complimentary Mediation Success Planning Session. You can also sign up for our eNewsletter or download our free e-book for more information regarding divorce in Massachusetts.