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Is appearing before a judge the only path to divorce?

On Behalf of | Sep 30, 2022 | Divorce |

In a divorce, the stakes for you and your family are high. You feel like the process may make or break the way you proceed forward as a single person. Do you need to leave your future up to a judge’s decision?

Allowing a judge to make choices regarding your family’s future is one way to get through a divorce. However, it is not the only way. Take a look at some of the ways Maryland law allows you and your spouse to take control of your post-marital future.

What is mediation?

A popular route for divorcing couples is mediation. This process involves a neutral party who oversees and facilitates discussions between the couple to arrive at a reasonable settlement of all divorce-related issues. Agreements reached in mediation do not become final or legal until both you and your spouse sign them and the judge countersigns.

Does mediation work for every couple?

Mediation works best if you and your spouse believe you can reach a reasonable solution with some guidance. If your divorce is particularly contentious, this path may not work. Any divorce involving allegations of violence or abuse may also not prove conducive to mediation. A party who does not openly discuss or disclose required information will also not benefit from mediation. Difficult spouses do not find mediation helpful, and while it may save you money if it works, mediation may also cost more should you and your spouse not reach an agreement.

While the court may recommend mediation, you do not have to do it. Also, remember that much like litigation proceedings, the court encourages couples to retain legal help to ensure things proceed fairly, even in mediation.