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Letter: Divorce mediation is wrong for some

Socially conservative politicians have been quietly trying to

Socially conservative politicians have been quietly trying to make it harder for couples to get divorced. Photo Credit: iStock

I'm responding to the article "Using mediation to reduce stress of getting a divorce" [Business, Oct. 6].

As a matrimonial attorney, it may seem self-serving to say I don't endorse mediation. Over the years, I've seen people walk into my office with problems that have emerged from working with mediators.

Not everyone is a good candidate for mediation, especially in situations where the two people involved aren't equally motivated to resolve the matter. This stagnates the mediation process and can waste time and money.

Those who cannot compromise are also not good candidates for mediation. Those who cannot communicate or sit in the same room with each other, and those who are on opposite poles when it comes to child custody arrangements, support arrangements or property division should also stay clear of mediation.

As the litigation process develops and the court weighs in, a lawyer often helps the parties move to settlement.

Even for those who are good mediation candidates, hiring a lawyer is the right decision. It's important for people to understand who is representing their interests. A mediator is simply trying to get people to make a deal, and a good mediator will tell clients they also should have an attorney advising them during the process.

Sari M. Friedman, Garden City


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