Family Law Library

What is your lawyer’s role during divorce mediation?

When you attend mediation, the mediator is the person who runs the show, so to speak. The mediator works with both sides in helping the parties come to an agreement. But just because the mediator is driving the settlement negotiations, your lawyer still has an important role.

Prepare

First, your lawyer will need to prepare for mediation. This entails meeting with you to discuss the process, preparing a file with all important and necessary documents to bring to the mediation, and exchanging documents with the opposing party. Even though the lawyer is not the one who will lead the negotiations, the lawyer still must come to the mediation prepared to advocate on your behalf.

Advocate

Your lawyer will need to be your advocate at mediation. Your lawyer will help you explain your case to the mediator, and will make sure that your wishes are being clearly expressed to the mediator. If you forget to tell the mediator a pertinent fact or detail, your lawyer will be sure to make sure that said detail is mentioned.

Advise

Your lawyer will be your advisor at mediation. While a mediator can tell you how the law works, and can suggest a certain path, you will still want your lawyer present to advise you on whether a proposed agreement is in your best interest. If it seems like the parties are too far apart with regard to reaching an agreement, your lawyer may advise that the mediation cease.

So while the parties and the mediator are front and center, so to speak, at mediation, your lawyer also has a significant role as well.