Couples who have a high net worth do not look forward to putting the details of their divorce on public display in the courtroom.

Mediation has become a popular alternative with divorcing couples of every economic level since it offers privacy along with many other benefits.

How it compares

Mediation is a form of alternate dispute resolution or ADR. It is a divorce process that takes place outside of the courtroom and therefore maintains privacy for the divorcing couple. As compared with litigation, mediation takes far less time. It is less stressful, less expensive and many couples say that the lack of contentiousness results in a more civilized and peaceful atmosphere.

What to expect

The couple meets with a trained mediator, a neutral party who has three main objectives:

  • To assist the couple in understanding the legal system
  • To advise the couple about court expectations with regard to the divorce settlement
  • To provide access to outside resources, such as financial professionals, accountants and parenting specialists, if needed

The parties will work together to create a divorce settlement agreement that is satisfactory to them both. The agreement then goes to the judge for review and becomes a legally binding document once the court grants approval.

Why it works

The parties develop their agreement through teamwork. Communication is key. In mediation, the parties appreciate remaining in control of their own divorce rather than having to follow the decisions of a judge. Because they agree to the terms, couples who opt for mediation are less apt to return to court with future issues. As an added benefit, divorcing parents find that mediation is a less stressful option than litigation for their children. And for many couples with a high net worth, the benefits begin with a desire for privacy.