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Child custody mediation, and what you can do about it

Divorce is already jarring enough to your routine and your child's routine. But a part of divorce is dividing your assets, your time, and in a purely figurative way, your children. In many cases, the splitting spouses are able to reach a child custody agreement before things go to court, thereby ensuring that custody will be shared in some way. Such an agreement makes sure each parent gets some time with their child.

However, in many other cases, the parents simply can't agree on a child custody deal. Their matter can go before a court, where the ultimate custody decision may not please either spouse. In fact, the decision may leave both spouses a bit unhappy.

There are cases where the splitting spouses either go to child custody mediation, or are ordered to go to child custody mediation. This is an important aspect in facilitating the divorce, and to ensure that the parents and the best interests of the child are taken care of.

Still, these meetings can be a bit dicey if the two parents are prepared for them. So the first step is exactly that -- prepare for your mediation. You should have a clear picture of what you want out of the child custody deal, and what elements you are willing to negotiate. You should also be prepared with questions and concerns about certain provisions in your deal.

Secondly, you should talk with a counselor or a divorce attorney before your meeting to ensure that you are ready for the meeting. They can also help advise you about important issues you may not be aware of.

Third and finally, it may be in your best interest to have a casual and calm discussion with your soon-to-be-ex before mediation. Have respect for his or her issues and demands -- just like you would expect him or her to show you.

Source: Huffington Post, "Divorce Confidential: Preparing for Child Custody Mediation," Caroline Choi, May 22, 2014

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