Divorce is notorious for being contentious and expensive, but did you know it doesn’t have to be? Divorce mediation is a process of professionally guided problem-solving oriented towards families and collaboration. In mediation, an impartial mediator will help you and your ex navigate all aspects of your divorce and ensure the process remains productive rather than adversarial. Here are five benefits of choosing mediation for your divorce:

1. It’s less expensive

Families going through a divorce already face enough financial strain when losing their spouse’s contributions and splitting their assets. In most instances, divorce mediation is roughly one-tenth or less of the cost of traditional divorce litigation.

2. It’s family-oriented

Divorce is hard on the entire family, especially children. High conflict divorce and custody battles can increase stress and anxiety in children and negatively affect their well-being for years to come. Rather than pitting you and your ex against each other, mediation allows the two of you to work together to determine what is best for your kids.

3. It takes less time

It may shock you to discover that the average timeframe for litigated divorce is between nine months and two years. Mediation, on the other hand, is a more streamlined process for separation that, on average, takes only two to four months to complete, sparing both you and your ex from a painful, drawn-out process.

4. It gives you control

In a litigated divorce, a judge ultimately determines what the terms of the divorce will be. In mediation, your mediator will guide you through all of your options for each aspect of your divorce, from spousal and child support to child custody and the division of marital assets. The mediator will work with you both to ensure arrangements are mutually beneficial to both parties.

5. It’s completely private

Family disputes are often personal and sensitive. In a litigated divorce, hearings are open to the public and eventually become part of the public record. With divorce mediation, you never have to set foot inside a courtroom. Every part of the mediation process is entirely confidential.

More and more couples today are looking to mediation as a more respectful and amicable way to dissolve their marriage. If you wish to avoid the pain and expense of litigated divorce, divorce mediation may be right for you.