Third Parties in a Divorce Mediation

Divorce proceedings are painful. Using a mediator instead of going to court is a proven way to keep tensions to a minimum as these professionals are trained to be unbiased arbiters during difficult times. They are also adept at negotiating solutions when a third party is involved in divorce mediation. Examples of third party involvement in a divorce include grandparents or other adult family members, business partners, or joint debtors of the couple.

Adult Relatives

Families come in all shapes and sizes, and many non-parent relatives (such as grandparents and step-siblings) have become significant caretakers or developed strong bonds with a couple’s children. A mediator will speak with all the people involved in the children’s lives, and likely with the help of a licensed child counselor, will make recommendations on which relationships are so vital to the best interest of a child, that the adult relatives should receive legal visitation rights after a divorce.

Business Partners

If one a couple owns a company with other people, a divorce could severely impact the firm’s operations and profitability. Although sometimes provisions for a divorce will be accounted for in the business’s founding legal documents, the situation on the ground may have changed, and the documents were not updated. In the latter case, business partners might be named as third parties in the divorce.

Joint Debtors

Dividing property can be a contentious part of a divorce, and in some cases, a mediator may recommend selling the asset and distributing the proceeds. Debt is harder to split, so they may be identified as third parties to formalize who will be responsible for paying what after the divorce is final.

Although some may think adding third parties to a divorce settlement complicates the process, dealing with these issues up front can save time and money in the long run but eliminating the need for additional lawsuits. No divorce is simple. But a professional mediator is trained to handle the most complicated divorces, even when third parties are involved.

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