Choosing the right divorce mediator- what to look for.

Choosing the right divorce mediator- what to look for.

Choosing the right divorce mediator tailored to your and your partner’s needs can significantly influence the effectiveness and smoothness of your divorce proceedings. During mediation, you and your partner will collaborate with a shared mediator to navigate through financial issues, potentially child custody and visitation rights, as well as emotional and personal matters. For the mediation to be successful, you both must agree on a mediator with whom you resonate.

What is divorce mediation?

Divorce mediation in Albany, New York, is confidential, meaning the mediator cannot disclose or reveal any conversations, documents, or other materials. However, there are very few exceptions, including threats of serious harm or allegations of child abuse.

Mediation is a court-approved process using a trained, neutral party to encourage and facilitate dispute resolution between two or more parties. Mediation is informal and non-adversarial, intending to help parties reach a mutually acceptable and voluntary agreement. Mediation delivers straight-line communication between parties without circumventing each other through attorneys.

According to the New York State Council on Divorce Mediation,

Divorce mediation is a voluntary settlement process used frequently and successfully by married couples who want to divorce and by domestic partners who wish to separate. Divorce mediation gives couples the option to plan their futures rationally and in an atmosphere of cooperation and mutual respect. With the assistance of a trained divorce mediator, you can reach an agreement that is custom-made for your family, your finances, and your future.

Choose a divorce mediator that you trust.

After reviewing a mediator’s qualifications, assessing whether they are a good match for both parties is essential. Agreement on the mediator is crucial to ensure the success of the process. Given the potential stress of divorce mediation, establishing trust is fundamental.

Trust is imperative because both parties must feel comfortable discussing very personal events during the marriage and what they are looking for as an outcome. The initial no-cost consultation should alleviate concerns and provide an open forum for questions.

Find a divorce mediator with specialized knowledge and skills

In many cases, extenuating circumstances, assets, and interpersonal issues can create challenges in the mediation process.

  • In a blended family situation, choosing the right mediator is crucial as you navigate discussions about support and custody for your respective children, especially if you share a child together.
  • You brought multiple assets to the marriage and others you acquired, and they will need to be addressed. Mediators are very successful in encouraging collaborative efforts regarding asset distribution.
  • For unique considerations like pet ownership, season tickets to sports events, or family heirlooms, it’s essential to have an experienced mediator who can facilitate negotiations calmly and efficiently.

Keep in mind that all conversations are private and held in strict confidence.

Choose a divorce mediator who practices divorce mediation exclusively.

In some circumstances, a legal practice may offer traditional divorce litigation and mediation services. Unlike mediation, litigation is an inherently adversarial process. More than 97% of all litigated divorces are settled. Assuming competent attorneys and a level playing field, the litigated settlement will be fair and equitable, returning the same result as mediation- with a much higher price tag.

Mediators are trained and focused on solution-oriented outcomes.  The parties’ collaboration is imperative, and successful mediation requires imagination, understanding, and willingness to commit to the outcome. Arguably, they have different skills than a traditional litigator. The mediator’s goal is to provide the service in a timely manner with little mental and emotional stress.

What are the essential qualities to look for in a divorce mediator?

A skilled and successful mediator demonstrates empathy and a deep comprehension of the divorce mediation process. Such qualities help ensure that both parties feel adequately represented by the mediator, leading to a just and balanced resolution.

Learn more about divorce mediation in Albany, New York.

Many couples choose divorce mediation over a litigated divorce because they find it more beneficial for their families. It gives them control over decision-making for themselves and their family. Divorce mediation encourages collaboration and communication and provides greater privacy.  Participants are more likely to abide by agreements they made in divorce mediation. (

Safer Divorce provides a welcoming and collaborative approach to divorce. Please get in touch with us to schedule a no-cost consultation.

John Millett is a father, a lawyer, and a fully certified and qualified R.1:40 court-appointed mediator who has facilitated dozens of family and civil mediations throughout Pennsylvania and New York. He has dedicated his skills and professional career to helping families arrive at solutions by finding common ground and avoiding conflict.

Resources:, New York State Council on Divorce Mediation,

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