Saskatoon Mediation Lawyers Helping Couples Avoid Family Court During the Divorce Process
Going through a divorce can be a frustrating and emotional process, especially when you and your spouse cannot agree on major family law matters regarding your children and family property. If the idea of facing your spouse in court makes you want to run and hide to avoid the whole legal process, you’re certainly not alone. That feeling of dread is very common during divorce, particularly if you’re not a confrontational person or you’re just tired of fighting with someone you loved for so long.
Fortunately, divorce does not have to mean spending time in court. You can use mediation instead to make major decisions together while staying as amicable as possible with your spouse. At Panko Collaborative Law & Mediation, our lawyers have years of experience helping Saskatoon clients legally end their marriages without stepping foot in the courtroom. We can do this by helping with dispute resolution through divorce mediation. Get to know how this process works, and then set up an initial consultation with our mediation lawyers in Saskatoon to get started.
What Is Mediation?
Mediation is an alternative to the traditional court process when it comes to divorce. Instead of hiring a lawyer to go to court to aggressively fight for your rights as you separate from your spouse, you will talk to a neutral third party, called a family mediator. Their goal is to help you and your spouse come to an agreement on family law issues.
For example, if you need to agree on parenting arrangements, division of assets and debts, and child support, you and your spouse will let the family mediator know what your desired outcome is. The mediator will then work toward finding ways to land on a compromise that works for both of you.
As you might imagine, the family mediation process will require cooperation and civility from both you and your spouse. Additionally, you will likely not come away from the final meeting having gotten everything you wanted, since the point is to come to an agreement that works for you and your spouse equally. However, mediation is often calmer and less aggressive than the typical divorce court process, so it may be appropriate if maintaining a harmonious relationship with your former spouse is important to you.
Mediation also gives you and your spouse more control over the results than going to court would since you work on conflict resolution together rather than letting a judge make decisions for your family. So, if you and your spouse want to maintain some control over the separation agreement and avoid a hostile courtroom environment during divorce, talk to our mediation lawyers in Saskatoon to see if this option is right for you.
What Is Early Family Dispute Resolution?
If you’re getting divorced in Saskatoon, it’s important to note that on July 1, 2022, Saskatchewan courts began requiring divorcing couples to go through the early family dispute resolution process first. If you fail to do so, you cannot proceed with the legal divorce process, unless you’re able to get a rare exception due to domestic violence, child abduction by the other parent, or another emergency situation.
If you’re not familiar with early family dispute resolution, it’s helpful to first know that it’s meant to resolve a range of family law issues without going to court. These include everything from parenting arrangements and visitation to child support and property division. In order to complete your divorce, you and your spouse need to come to an agreement on these important matters, and the family dispute resolution process will help.
There are four main forms of this type of conflict resolution available to you in Saskatoon. They include:
- Collaborative law
- Parenting coordination
It’s up to you and your spouse to choose the option that’s best for both of you. Regardless of the one you choose, the goal is to come to an agreement on all family law matters that apply to your case. Once you complete the family dispute resolution course you decide is right for your family, you will get a certificate of participation so you can continue with the legal process of divorcing your spouse.
At Panko Collaborative Law & Mediation, we’re proud to help our clients find the right type of conflict resolution for their family. We believe in working toward a satisfactory outcome for everyone without involving the court system whenever possible. As such, we encourage you to come to us for help whether you’re considering mediation, collaborative law, or parenting coordination in Saskatoon.
How Do Early Family Dispute Resolution Options Differ from Each Other?
At our Saskatoon law firm, our lawyers help clients with family mediation, parenting coordination, and collaborative law. These processes are similar in that they avoid the divorce court process and allow clients more control than usual over the outcome.
But a major difference is that mediation and parenting coordination are both performed with a neutral mediator. By contrast, collaborative law requires each spouse to hire their own lawyer to represent them in negotiations until they sign a separation agreement.
Additionally, during mediation, the family mediator works hard to help spouses communicate better so their heightened emotions don’t stop them from reaching a settlement that works for both of them. With collaborative law, each spouse will have a lawyer on their side to ensure their interests are not ignored while the other spouse gets their way.
Furthermore, mediators usually help couples with numerous issues early in the process. But parenting coordinators usually only step in after it’s clear that parents cannot agree on issues within their parenting plan. Their goal is to limit the negative effects that parental conflict can have on children while ensuring the final outcome is what’s best for them.
If you have any other questions about how family mediation differs from other services we offer, we invite you to call our Saskatoon law offices to learn more.
Is It Time To Hire Mediation Lawyers in Saskatoon?
If you are in the early stages of divorce and need to know what requirements you’re supposed to meet to proceed, come to Panko Collaborative Law & Mediation today. Our mediation lawyers in Saskatoon are dedicated to helping clients legally end relationships that are no longer working out for them while avoiding the court system whenever possible.
After all, going to court for divorce and all the family law matters associated with it can be time-consuming, expensive, and emotionally draining for all involved. Any time you can avoid the courtroom in favor of mediation or similar negotiations, you should, as the right dispute resolution tactic can save your sanity. If you want to learn more about mediation, collaborative law, or parenting coordination, call our Saskatoon law firm today at 306-518-8107 to set up an initial consultation with our skilled lawyers.