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Divorce Mediation is a process whereby the mediator attempts to facilitate the resolution of divorce issues between the husband and wife in an amicable and non-adversarial manner. Divorce Mediation is successful for couples willing to make a good faith effort to reach an agreement on the issues raised by separation and divorce. Divorce Mediation helps to eliminate potentially numerous court appearances and provides a mechanism for the couple to resolve their issues in a fair and equitable manner.
 
The agreement in a divorce case is 99% of the matter. Once an agreement is signed and filed with the court, it takes approximately six weeks to get a hearing. There is only one hearing required and that hearing usually lasts less than five minutes if both parties continue to agree to the initial terms. It takes 90 days from the date of the hearing for the divorce to become final. All spouses with children under the age of 18 must attend a parenting class that shows how their behavior in living separately can impact the children. This class is required before the court will schedule a final divorce hearing. It costs $50 per spouse and it usually takes place over the course of one weekend.
 
The benefits derived from divorce mediation are enormous. The first benefit is the saving of money. Of equal importance are the emotional benefits. Mediation reduces feelings of anger, frustration, fear and helplessness. Children benefit from mediation. Studies have shown a direct correlation between the amount of conflict exhibited between divorcing parents and the difficulties experienced by their children. (Submitted by Timothy F. Stark, Esquire, of North Andover.)  

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