As an Illinois divorce mediator and practicing family law attorney, I know that people are always searching the Internet for a “divorce mediator near me.” That might not be a bad idea, but there’s some things you need to know before starting divorce mediation in Illinois.
I can definitely understand why you would want to find a divorce mediator who is near where you are. Maybe you are in Chicago, Evanston, Oak Park, Naperville, or Northbrook. Maybe you are somewhere else in Illinois in the county of Cook, Lake, DuPage, or Champaign.
But you might have problems if you are intent on going to any divorce mediator just because he or she is close.
If you search for a “divorce mediator near me,” great. But also consider these tips.
#1: Use a mediator who is also a divorce lawyer
There are lots of divorce mediators out there.
Many of them stink of desperation to get their beaks wet in the divorce industry.
They’re social works, non-lawyers, therapists, and even people with finance degrees that hop from state-to-state.
The reason you want a divorce mediator who is also a lawyer is because a divorce mediation involves developing an agreement that is based on the law and will be legally enforceable. Divorce mediators who are not lawyers simply are ignorant about many aspects of the law that will impact your divorce.
There are various attorneys who are also mediators, but you can check out one of them at this website; that mediator offers in-person and virtual mediation.
#2: Think about whether mediation is approriate
Divorce mediation is not appropriate for everyone.
If you or your spouse wants to use it for manipulation or harassment, it is simply going to be an expensive waste of time.
Divorce mediation in Illinois works with both people want to mediate in good faith.
#3: Choose a mediator with the right approach
Divorce mediation is not therapy.
Therefore, you should choose a mediator that will get down to business. The best mediators often give people homework to do to make a mediation more efficient. Also, the best divorce mediators – always those who are also Illinois divorce lawyers – also know when and how to direct people to be more focused in their divorce mediation.