It used to be that you just went out and hired an attorney and then maybe sought out some financial advice on your divorce.
Your attorney became your best friend, confident, therapist, coach and legal advisor and then at the end of each month, those billable hours would all show in one big fat bill!
The arrival of divorce coaching and mediation has changed up the process making it more goal driven, offering clarity, emotional support, forward driven thinking and in the end, helps to create a more amiable and “child centered” divorce than in prior years. For a lot less money!
Here is a simplified definition of “Mediation”:
“A family law mediator is a neutral party specially trained to help couples resolve the issues in their divorce. The mediator facilitates the communication between the parties by making sure each party is given an uninterrupted time to speak, asking a party to restate or explain a point when necessary, and asking questions to make communication clear. The mediator also provides information about the legal system, how issues may be viewed by lawyers or judges, and what alternatives there are for solving issues. When necessary, the mediator will refer the couple to third party experts for services such as real estate appraisals, for example”. (source: Family.Findlaw.com)
Divorce coaching offers a solution focused platform with goal oriented strategies that enable choices and decisions to be made from a more calm, rationale and peaceful frame of mind.
Divorce coaching, unlike counseling, focuses on the present and keeping your client moving forward and through emotional support and guidance, helps prepare the client for the business aspect of their divorce. Offering the client what I refer to as “the 3 c’s of divorce”.
Clarity on their desired outcome, courage to face the road ahead and the confidence to get through the process in the shortest amount of time with the least amount of hassle!
Here are some facts along with speculation about where the industry is going:
First, divorce numbers are not going down.
In fact, they will likely go up. While the overall number of marriages is declining in some countries, current projections indicate a sharp increase in the number of divorces in the future. This is partially because divorce is no longer considered taboo, but also because the first generation who witnessed widespread divorce in the 1980s are getting older and many will follow in the footsteps of their parents. It is currently estimated in some studies, that today’s teens , or Generation Z ( Generation Z, which has been defined as people born from the mid 1990s to the early 2000s, made up 25% of the U.S. population, making them a larger cohort than the Baby Boomers or Millennials) will have on average, 2-3 marriages and 2-3 divorces in their lifetimes without having any major personal issues with it. Communities are changing, including the influence of religion, which points to an overall acceptance of divorce not known in previous years..
As society continues to become more accepting of divorce and technology streamlines our daily lives, divorce itself will become not only less expensive, but less complicated. Innovation will make the process more transparent, allowing clients to easily learn the reputation of divorce professionals before they hire them via the web, even defining specific criteria for their own unique needs. This means that it will be easier for people to identify the professional who is best suited to help with their particular situation. Technology is also opening access to previously difficult-to-find legal content, which means that couples can do much of their preparation and legal work themselves. Most of the information they need can be found on websites and good referrals to one’s “Divorce Team” and the outcome of that means a faster, more affordable and less complicated divorce.
Mediation will become the most popular divorce solution. In the interest of saving time and money, many clients will choose to avoid litigation and lawyers with less than stellar reputations. The simplification of the divorce process means that in the future couples will be able to split in less stressful and more amicable way, such as through a mediation process. It’s only a matter of time before mediation becomes the top method of divorce.
Dominique is a strong advocate for seeking advice and guidance from a reputable family law attorney when there are larger assets and children to consider. Not that mediation cannot also play a role, but she has seen a lot left on the table when Attorneys are not at minimum.
Generally, a good divorce attorney will recommend mediation if the state does not mandate it already. You can see attorney’s that Dominique has interviewed on Divorzing TV Show.
As the market continues to move and evolve there are a few steps divorce professionals can take to ensure they are not left behind: