Mediation Instead of Trial

Sometimes you just want to settle a conflict.  Even if it costs you more money, sometimes it may be worth it to you personally, professionally, emotionally, or with the right set of circumstances to have a matter settled.  A Mediation rather than a Trial may be able to bring you that. In Mediation, you control the crash.  In Mediation, you do not get as much of a winner and a loser, but you do get to settle the matter.  Depending on your circumstances and your goals, Mediation may be the right thing for you. A trial is going to result in a winner and a loser, and a judge is going to decide which is which.  In Mediation, however, you have the opportunity to sit down with the other side and hammer out a deal.  Then once the deal is made, it is made, and you have settled the issue.  It gives both sides more control over the outcome. There are a number of civil law matters where Mediation can be used, such as divorce and consumer debt defense.  Seek competent legal counsel to determine if Mediation is an option in your case, and if it would be beneficial to […] Read More

Mediation Instead of Trial

In Mediation, you do not get as much of a winner and a loser, but you do get to settle the matter.  Depending on your circumstances and your goals, Mediation may be the right thing for you. A trial is going to result in a winner and a loser, and a judge is going to decide which is which.  In Mediation, however, you have the opportunity to sit down with the other side and hammer out a deal.  Then once the deal is made, it is made, and you have settled the issue.  It gives both sides more control over the outcome. There are a number of civil law matters where Mediation can be used, such as divorce.  Seek competent legal counsel to determine if Mediation is an option in your case, and if it would be beneficial to you.   Read More

Therapeutic Divorce…Believe It Or Not!

According to Ripley’s Believe It Or Not, the word ‘gift’ means ‘poison’ and ‘marriage’ in Swedish—depends on how you take it.  In Florida, we have Therapeutic Divorce, so your marriage does not have to be poison. Marriage can be difficult to take, and sometimes divorce is a necessary cure, but you do have a choice.  Therapeutic divorce offers an alternative to the traditional sense of “till death do us part.”  (It does not mean you keep getting divorced until you feel better.) Once the love is gone, it’s just math—therapeutic divorce upholds that statement.  The idea behind it is to work out the details while allowing both sides to continue to be good parents, good employees or employers, good at whatever it is that they are.  Therapeutic divorce is not a new concept, and there’s been a push for it in Florida. One of the caveats of therapeutic divorce is that if the negotiations break down, none of the attorneys can continue to be used by the clients.  This eliminates any attorney incentive to keep the couple fighting for more money.  It keeps the focus on the business of how best to deal with the details, and also does not […] Read More

Love & Math

When the love is gone, it is only math.  If both sides are ready to sit down and take the necessary steps to complete the procedure, then a divorce can be over and done with in about a month, and it does not have to cost a fortune or the remainder of your sanity. Marriage is a choice; divorce might be a necessity, but you can choose how you go about it.  Divorce does not have to be a blood sport. Florida is a no-fault state, meaning you can get divorced if you just say the marriage is irretrievably broken.  Furthermore, you can choose to have a Therapeutic Divorce (no, that does not mean you keep getting divorced until you feel better).  The idea behind Therapeutic Divorce is to work out the details while allowing both sides to continue to be good parents, good employees or employers, good at whatever it is that they are.  It keeps the focus on the business of how best to deal with the details. Advantages to Therapeutic Divorce include the following: You negotiate the settlement (instead of having a Judge decide it for you). No public records—because Therapeutic Divorce goes through mediation and not […] Read More

Choices in Divorce

Well, you picked her, now what are you going to do?  There are choices in divorce just as there are in marriage.  Divorce can be a very long, expensive courtroom drama…but it does not have to be.  You can choose NOT to make it a blood sport, and it does not have to cost a lot or take a long time.  Therapeutic Divorce offers each side an opportunity to negotiate a deal through their own choices instead of following the decisions of a judge. When the love is gone, it is only math. The idea behind Therapeutic Divorce is to work out the details while allowing both sides to continue to be good parents, good employees or employers, good at whatever it is that they are.  It keeps the focus on the business of how best to deal with the details, and also does not make public those details.  Because the process goes through mediation and not through the court, the dirty laundry is hampered from public view. In some cases, divorce is necessary, but it does not have to be a Kardashian epic drama.  If both sides are ready to sit down and take the necessary steps to complete […] Read More

Mediation & Horsemeat – Dividing the Leftovers

You can beat a dead horse…it just is not going anywhere. Do you want a Judge to decide what to do with the meat of the matter, or would you rather decide yourselves what to do with the carcass of a bad situation?  Sometimes mediation is an option…sometimes it is not a bad option. The Judge may tell you to grind up the meat and feed it to your children as part of child support (though probably not).  You do not know what a Judge will do, neither do you have control over their decision.  You may prefer mediation instead where you and your opponent could decide to sell the meat for dog chow and use the money from the sale to buy food for your children. The nice thing about mediation, especially in divorce, is that it is up to you and your soon-to-be-ex-spouse to shape the outcome.  Generally it is easier to live with an agreement you create, rather than trying to follow someone else’s order.  Mediation gives you more control over your future. Read More

Alimony App in Massachusetts

For 99 cents, Massachusetts couples can figure out how much divorce will cost them in alimony…and do it at the tap of an app on their iPhone.  Launched by a divorce lawyer, the new app calculates alimony and divorce payments for unhappy couples in Massachusetts, and creates child support forms in PDF formats.  The app does not work in Florida. Divorce laws differ from state to state, for instance Florida does not recognize a ‘legally separated’ status the way Massachusetts does.  Nor does Florida calculate alimony the same way. Florida does offer Therapeutic Divorce, however, as an alternative to a blood sport courtroom drama.  Once the love is gone, it’s only math.  The idea behind Therapeutic Divorce is to work out the details while allowing both sides to continue to be good parents, good employees or employers, good at whatever it is that they are.  It keeps the focus on the business of how best to deal with the details, and also does not make public those details.  Because the process goes through mediation and not through the court, the dirty laundry is hampered from public view. Massachusetts’ alimony app may be just the thing while neighboring New York is […] Read More

Wise Men Say: Therapeutic Divorce

Only fools rush in…divorce can take longer.  Divorce can be an epic blood sport, or it can be over and done with in about a month. Therapeutic Divorce offers unhappy couples greater involvement in the negotiations (instead of leaving it up to a Judge to decide) and keeps the proceedings out of public record.  Therapeutic Divorce is an alternative to the traditional courtroom drama.  Done through mediation, it gives both sides greater opportunity to mold the agreement. You can have a court battle if you want to, but if you are ready to sit down and take the necessary steps to complete the procedure, then it can be done without dragging out legal billing.  When the love is gone, it is only math. Divorce is not just for the wicked.  Therapeutic Divorce allows both sides to continue doing what they are good at—whether it is being a good parent, a good employee, etc.—while they work out the details of a difficult situation. Read More

Rash Behavior in Divorce

Boy meets girl.  They fall in love.  They get married.  Then boy finds out that girl is sleeping with his best friend.  To get “even,” boy sleeps with girl’s best friend.  Boy wakes up with a rash. Divorce is sometimes necessary.  Once the love is gone, it’s only math, and lawyers can help you get through the long division. Division follows a pattern of steps until there are no remainders.  Quotients do not come from rash decisions.  In a personal situation, you may need separation from the emotional aspect in order to proceed with the “business” of divorce.  Lawyers remove emotion so that a problem can be resolved. You can still spend a lot of time, money, and anguish in a divorce case.  You can pay astronomical legal fees to a divorce attorney to eviscerate your spouse.  Or you may want to consider Therapeutic Divorce.   An advantage of Therapeutic Divorce is that it goes through mediation, not public records.  You sit down with your ex-spouse-to-be and hammer out a deal that everyone can agree on…you are not leaving your assets up to a judge to divide.  Thus Therapeutic Divorce is a way for the couple to have more control over […] Read More

Foreclosure Mediation: Check, Please!

So you go out to a restaurant and the service is lousy and there is only one thing on the menu.  Sounds like Foreclosure Mediation—check, please! Foreclosure Mediation is supposed to be a negotiation, but in reality, it is a monologue.  You cannot negotiate only one option.  And you cannot negotiate with someone who only has the authority to offer one option. The Florida Supreme Court mandated Foreclosure Mediation in 2009 to help relieve the backlog of cases, but the program stagnated over the singular result of all Foreclosure Mediations.  A high court panel recently recognized the problem. Loan Modification (despite its mythic proportions) can be a viable resolution to foreclosure…so can a handful of other choices.  Of the 350,000 foreclosure cases in Florida, they are not all alike.  Homeowners benefit when they have more than one option. Foreclosure Defense offers a variety of choices, allowing the Homeowner to customize a strategy to his individual situation.  Meanwhile, a legal defense questions the Lender’s authority to take action, keeping default from overtaking the Homeowner before a strategy has the chance to work. In the mayhem of Mortgage Backed Securities, does the plaintiff really own the loan and have the authority to […] Read More