Time to the Finish Line

Divorce and business mediator, Sandy Balick, of Consensus Point Mediation LLC discusses the final steps of the divorce mediation process.“What’s involved in going from mediation to a final divorce and how long will this take?”

These are common questions from couples who are considering mediation of their divorces.

The outcome of the mediation – many decisions large and small, regarding such things as:

  • Parental visiting schedules (parenting)
  • Child support
  • Maintenance (formerly, alimony)
  • Asset division, etc.

– must be folded, preferably by an attorney, into a Settlement Agreement.

This Agreement becomes the centerpiece of the court filings to be submitted in support of an uncontested divorce. Settlement Agreements, which may run 30 pages or more, not only detail property and parenting matters, but they also incorporate many clauses customarily included as a matter of good drafting practice. These clauses will not have been the product of negotiation, but they are important to both parties. They are reviewed by the couple during the agreement review process, which is the final step, short of signing, in formalizing the Settlement Agreement (the use of individual review attorneys for this purpose is highly recommended).

A detailed review of the draft is important because, upon signing, it becomes a legally enforceable document – even though the actual divorce judgment is some months off.

Depending on the county and whether there are children in the marriage, the court filing involves preparation of approximately 12 additional documents. These documents don’t require the time and attention to detail, as does the Separation Agreement. Upon authorization by the couple, all the necessary documents are quickly prepared and after service/signing, are presented together with the signed Settlement Agreement for preliminary review by a court officer. Upon acceptance, judicial review is set in motion and filers in New York County may anticipate a Judgment of Divorce in 4 to 6 months. In most cases, there will be no need for the parties to actually appear in court.

Each couple presents with unique circumstances and issues. Your mediator and/or attorney will be able to give you a more precise overall estimate of the amount of time it may take to go from mediation to a final judgment.

Consensus Point Mediation affords potential clients a free, in-person consultation so that they may get a more precise view of the content, cost and time considerations of a mediated divorce. Please feel free to arrange a consultation by calling us at 646-340-3434.

Sanford (Sandy) Balick, Attorney & Mediator, NY Sandy Balick signature
Sanford E. Balick, Esq.
Founder & Principal Mediator
Consensus Point Mediation, LLC.

Phone: (646) 340-3434
Email: ConsensusPointLLC@gmail.com
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