Almost every divorce case has the potential to get complicated. The wide variety of issues to be addressed in any given divorce, such as property division, alimony, child custody and child support, can leave Chicago area residents with more questions than answers. However, just because a divorce case is getting complicated doesn’t mean that the case needs to devolve into courtroom fights and litigation, or ultimately end up in a jury trial setting. Many people find that mediation is an effective form of alternative dispute resolution.

The fact is that a very minor number of divorce cases actually proceed all the way to a bench or jury trial. Most divorcing couples will reach an out-of-court settlement on the variety of issues that need to be addressed in the divorce case. While direct, one-to-one negotiations between the divorcing couples’ attorneys can sometimes result in agreements on some of the simpler issues in the case, complicated issues may benefit from mediation efforts.

In mediation, a neutral third-party mediator will attempt to help the parties work out their disagreements. Unlike a family law judge, the mediator isn’t there to make decisions. Rather, the mediator is there to help facilitate healthy discussions and suggest creative solutions that might help the soon-to-be ex-spouses reach a decision about how to settle their divorce case.

Divorce case negotiations can be tricky, especially in complex divorce cases. But, if the divorcing couple is able to at least attempt to be civil and work on the legal issues in order to get the divorce case behind them, a satisfactory result may be possible through the mediation process.