There are many decisions in a typical divorce that have the potential to affect a family for years to come. Because of this, members of many divorcing couples in Florida try to secure unrealistic outcomes, at least at first.
It is not that these goals are unrealistic by themselves, but, in the context of divorce, they are unlikely to go without opposition from the other side. Examples might include sole custody of children without visitation, total asset ownership and so on. In these types of cases, and in less extreme examples as well, many couples choose to mediate their disputes in order to reach a more suitable settlement without going into court.
As underlined by an article in St. Louis Magazine, mediation has the potential to let both sides realize that they must work together create a livable future for the family. In fact, most of what the article mentions about marriage mediation is also often true about divorce. Divorcing couples often make decisions that change the future of their family, especially when it comes to issues such as child support and visitation. Finding a way to work together has the potential to improve that future.
Everyone has different personal goals when entering mediation. While it is generally true that both sides want to avoid court, it is also generally a good idea not to assume anything going into the process. For example, according to Florida Statute, a court could order mediation if one party requests it. Therefore, parties to the mediation could simply be fulfilling a legal requirement and have no particular goals for the process itself.
It is becoming more common to see mediation applied to divorce cases. However, its effectiveness is often determined by the details of the situation and the skill of the mediator.