When you think of a “bad divorce,” what’s the first thing that comes to mind? For most people, it could be one of two things: Child custody issues, and money. These are the two more thorny issues when it comes to divorce, and it’s obvious why. When there is a bitter disagreement about child custody, or when one or both parents are seeking to deprive the other of custody rights, things can get very ugly. Likewise, when there are significant or vital financial assets at stake, and both parties believe the other is trying to take advantage, there is no end to the arguing. That’s why the divorce ends up in court; and that’s why the final decisions ultimately rest with a judge. The divorcing parties were simply not able to resolve their differences in a more constructive way; so lawyers end up arguing their cases, and judges make the final call.

Divorce mediation has gained a great deal of popularity in recent years because it seeks to avoid these unwanted scenarios through constructive dialogue and methodical problem solving. With the help of an experience divorce mediator, many couples are able to find productive ways to approach issues involving child custody, finances, and other key aspects of divorce.

A lot of people wonder, however, whether this approach is actually more financially viable than “traditional” divorce involving lawyers. Can divorce really be cheaper this way, and is it really worth investigating?

The answer is clearly yes. In fact, one of the main reasons people go the route of divorce mediation is because it ends up saving untold amounts of money. When you compare the fees paid to a divorce mediator (a reputable one with good business practices) to the legal fees each party would have to pay in order to aggressively defend their interests against the other, the difference is astounding. When both parties are willing to participate in a constructive mediation process, the overall cost of the divorce plummets – and that’s good for everyone.

Money isn’t everything, however – especially when kids are involved. That’s another great benefit of divorce mediation. Co-parenting outcomes are typically much more constructive and deliberate when divorce occurs through a mediation process. Both parties have a forum to constructively talk through their issues and concerns, and arrive at solution that is mutually beneficial and agreeable. Children definitely feel the difference here. When child custody is highly contentious, the process of divorce (and the aftermath) can be a much more difficult experience for kids.

Finding a good divorce mediator

You might see a lot of different professionals in your area – but which one will give you the best result? A lot of it depends on chemistry. If you meet with a specialist and feel good about it, that alone is a reason to move forward. But experience, training, and online reputation are also important. This is a process you only want to put in the hands of a reputable professional with a solid track record. That’s how you’ll end up receiving the full benefits of divorce mediation.