Is Co-Mediation Divorce Mediation More Expensive than Court?

During divorce mediation, a third party neutral called a mediator works with the parties to help them create a settlement agreement that finalizes their dispute.  If the parties settle their case, there is no need to go to court and spend thousands of dollars in legal fees on a trial.  Mediation allows the parties to determine how their case is settled, as the mediator’s role is to help the parties negotiate and compromise.  During co-mediation divorce mediation, two mediators help the parties with their discussions.  Upon hearing that two mediators are present during co-mediation divorce mediation, most clients worry that it will be a costly process.  However, co-mediation divorce mediation will actually save the parties a significant amount of money.

There are a number of players involved in a family court trial.  Attorneys require payment by the hour, and trial preparation takes dozens of hours.  Expert witnesses may be necessary to testify about accounting issues, child custody and visitation concerns, and other disputed facts in the case.  These experts often charge hourly rates as well, and their travel expenses must also be reimbursed.

In addition, a number of documents and other types of evidence must be copied or reproduced for trial—all of which can become quite expensive.

In contrast, two mediators may charge a few thousand dollars for their services.  Though this fee is not inexpensive, it is a fraction of what a courtroom trial would cost if the parties could not settle their case.  If the parties do settle at mediation, which is likely, they have not only saved money, but also time that would have been spent preparing for an expensive trial.  Therefore, co-mediation divorce mediation, though it may be more expensive than typical mediation, is an excellent alternative to a courtroom trial.