Mediation is a form of dispute resolution that is common in family and other disputes. Unlike litigation and arbitration, mediation can help you reach an agreement with your ex-spouse or family member rather than having the court determine what the result should be. In Michigan, about 30,000 people use mediation to resolve their cases every year.
When you go to court, there are usually two outcomes: One of the parties wins and the other loses. Oftentimes, both parties are unhappy and neither wants to negotiate with the other. With mediation, however, everyone should walk away feeling good about the settlement.
A mediation case will focus on your and the other party’s needs so that there is balance. A compromise is not necessarily the end goal: The real purpose is to find a solution that works for both of you. This involves looking to alternatives and learning new things about each other’s wishes. Once you find a resolution, you should put it in writing and sign it.
Although people find a solution through mediation about 80% of the time, you and the other party do not have to agree. If mediation does not seem to be working, your mediator can recommend a new course of action through a report. The court can take on the case if you or the other party reject your mediator’s report.
Once the mediation process is over, you should have an idea of what you need for yourself and your family. You and the other party should also have an easier time moving on without worry.