Divorce Mediation Styles
For a number of years, Darren M. Shapiro Esq. has worked as a certified mediator tackling matters for clients in Nassau and Suffolk County Long Island and other New Yorkers. As a professional litigator, trained collaborative attorney, and divorce mediator, Mr. Shapiro has utilized a number of methods available for moving through family law issues in New York. Often, the decision that couples make regarding which route to take, will substantially change not only the experience of the divorce procedure itself, but the costs involved, and the results that may occur.
Because it lacks the strain and frustration typically involved in litigation, Mr. Darren Shapiro frequently finds that mediation provides a popular alternative for dispute resolution. Rather than fighting out a case in court, mediation allows for a voluntary process of settlement to take place, permitting a couple to make their own decisions about important aspects of their separation or divorce - such as where children will reside, how visitation aka parenting time will be addressed, and which spouse, if either, will pay support to the other. Though the idea of mediation with a professional such as Mr. Shapiro can be tempting to many couples in turmoil, it is not always the ideal solution in certain circumstances - such as cases that involve a history of domestic violence.
Within the process of divorce mediation, Mr. Darren Shapiro works as a trained professional and neutral party, responsible for helping both parties come to terms regarding their needs and best interests. As such, he has no affiliation with either spouse involved, and endeavors to offer a comfortable and equal setting in which both parties can discuss their requirements. Mr. Shapiro offers the couples he works with the benefit of an in-depth knowledge regarding the domestic relations law of New York, and the laws governing divorce within the state. Often, it is recommended that parties involved within mediation should also access legal representation from review attorneys separately - particularly during the time in which an agreement is drafted. This extra professional assistance should provide some protection against oversights that may occur during the process of mediation.
When a couple chooses to approach mediation as a method for divorce, they will begin by meeting with Mr. Shapiro in a review session wherein issues presented by the divorce can be discussed. At this point, Mr. Shapiro will begin to facilitate the negotiation and discussion to take place, assisting the spouses in finding agreements that meet with their individual and family needs. Importantly however, though Mr. Shapiro can offer guidance, the couple will retain responsibility for reaching an agreement that they are both happy with. At the close of the mediation process, the mediator is able to draft a written document that explains the agreements that both parties reached during their negotiation.
While some mediators follow similar steps in helping a couple decide on the specific issues of their divorce, it's worth noting that different professionals use different styles, which are capable of affecting the process outcome. For instance, Mr. Shapiro may offer substantial guidance or direction if the parties involved in the mediation are stuck on a certain point, or cannot come up with their own ideas regarding an issue. Because he is also an experienced litigator, Mr. Shapiro can offer an opinion as to how likely it is for a court to sign off on certain agreements between spouses. For instance, he could provide information about whether the court is likely to agree with an idea associated with deviating from the child support guidelines which must be considered, but not necessarily followed, when making any child support agreement.
Different mediators, and at times Darren Shapiro, may sometimes offer fewer opinions to the parties before him, instead attempting to prompt the spouses to come to their own conclusions through the use of questions, and the search for interests that lie beneath the surface of different options. Mr. Shapiro will also adopt this style in circumstances that allow for it, so as to ensure that the parties involved in mediation have the utmost control over their decisions and choices. Another style that some mediation experts use focuses on empowering the spouses involved and helping them to recognize the different points of view being presented during the negotiation process. On the other hand, some mediators focus upon reframing the story surrounding the couple's relationship in order to help each spouse obtain some distance from the conflicts present, in order to reach an appropriate resolution.
One aspect in which mediation styles can also differ is in the use of breakout sessions which involve meetings between a single spouse and the mediator, separate from the use of joint mediation sessions. Some mediators find that these sessions are helpful to their clients, as they offer them an opportunity to disclose information that they would otherwise feel uncomfortable disclosing in front of the other spouse. However, many mediators also consider this particular strategy to be unhelpful, as it can damage the trust between mediator and client as each is wary of what is being said outside of their presence.
As with most aspects of family law, the appropriate style that should be used by a couple attempting mediation will be a matter of personal preference. Objectively, no style is better than another, and in many cases, mediators like Mr. Darren Shapiro will make use of a combination of approaches in order to deliver the best results. Any client who is unsure about which style of mediation may appeal most to them can discuss the matter with their chosen attorney and even ask questions regarding whether a particular approach could work for themselves and their spouse.
For more information about how you could make use of mediation in the process of your New York Divorce, please reach out to Darren Shapiro's office for Law and Mediation via our online form, or over the phone at (516) 333-6555. You should also feel free to schedule your free half-hour consultation with your spouse in order to discuss your mediation options. Let us know what we can do for you, it would be our pleasure to offer guidance and help.