The more prepared you are before your mediation session, the more smoothly things will go. Use these tips to help you get the most out of your session.
1. Make a list of all the things that need to be decided, as well as how you feel about them, and why.
2. Prioritize that list. What are your biggest concerns? What are you most likely to budge on?
3. Bring relevant paperwork to your session. This could include pay stubs, your last tax return, and documentation regarding the kids’ insurance and daycare expenses. Bring extra copies to share.
4. Be open to new ideas – don’t arrive with an uncompromising mindset. You’re there to work out what’s best for your family.
5. Consider getting independent advice before your mediation. This could include having a one-hour consultation with an experienced family law attorney. An attorney can identify the strengths and weaknesses of your case as well as what the outcome might be in court. You might also consult with a divorce financial specialist. A financial specialist can help you work out your short and long-term financial needs and help identify which marital assets are best suited to meet those needs.
6. Prepare emotionally and physically for your mediation session. Get a good night’s sleep the night before and eat something prior to your arrival. Also, make sure to bring a snack – sometimes sessions can go long, especially if you are making good progress. Don’t be afraid to ask for breaks during the session. Sometimes just getting outside the building for a few minutes can make all the difference.