Mediation Attorney Phoenix, Arizona

At Lincoln & Wenk, we’re long-time believers in mediation. In a divorce case, mediation can dial down the stress and give both parties a greater sense of control over their circumstances. Avoiding litigation saves time and money, and can also make it easier for former spouses who are still co-parents to work together moving forward.

Arizona Divorce Mediation Lawyer

With over 25 years of combined experience, the lawyers at Lincoln & Wenk, PLLC, provide a knowledgeable perspective on when mediation is a viable alternative to litigation. We will discuss your options and strive to enable you to efficiently move forward.

How Mediation Works in Arizona

Divorce Mediation in Arizona

Divorce mediation is run by a mediator, whose role is different from that of a judge or an arbitrator. While judges and arbitrators make decisions about issues such as how property will be divided, a mediator has no decision-making power. Instead, the ultimate decision is left to the parties.

The process may vary a bit from mediation to mediation, depending on the number and complexity of issues to be resolved and how far apart the parties are. Generally, it goes like this:

  • The mediator may ask each party to submit a statement of their positions prior to mediation, to help understand the issues to be resolved and where each party stands.
  • The mediator meets with both parties (and their attorneys, if they are represented), explains how the process will work, and the rules of the proceedings.
  • Each party will have an opportunity to present their position.
  • The mediator will organize the issues and information such as income and property values to ensure that everyone is working with the same information and any areas of disagreement are clear.
  • Depending on how the negotiations are going, the mediator may choose to meet with each party separately.

In mediation, there are three possible outcomes:

  • The parties reach an agreement on all issues.
  • The parties reach an agreement on some issues, but leave some issues unresolved to litigate in court.
  • The parties are unable to reach any agreement, and all issues are contested.

Though the mediator guides the process, keeps negotiations on track, and discusses the issues with the parties, they have no role in the decision-making. The parties either choose to agree or they do not.

Why Choose Mediation?

Mediation can be beneficial for both parties in a divorce and for any children of the marriage for several reasons.

Mediation is Confidential

When you fight out your issues in court, it’s a public proceeding. With certain very limited exceptions, everything that’s said in the courtroom is public. But, mediation is confidential. Your mediator can’t disclose what was discussed in mediation except in rare circumstances, such as when the mediator believes a minor child is being abused.

Mediation is Less Expensive

Preparing for trial and litigating your case in divorce court can be very expensive. Even before you get to trial, your divorce lawyer will have to interview witnesses, perhaps hire expert witnesses, exchange discovery, prepare exhibits, have subpoenas served, and more. Then, depending on the complexity of your case, there may be hours of in-court time. Reaching an agreement in mediation can substantially shorten the process, making it less expensive for everyone.

Mediation Gives the Parties a Greater Degree of Control

When you fight out the issues in court, odds are good that at least one party will be unhappy with the result. When you resolve your issues through mediation, you have a say every step of the way. You’re never required to enter into an agreement, and can make your own decisions about what is most important and what may not be worth fighting over.

Mediation Can Help Keep the Peace

Divorce is often a contentious process, and that’s stressful for everyone–especially the couple’s children. A drawn-out battle aggravates that stress, and can make it much more difficult for the divorcing parties to settle back into the role of co-parents when the fighting is over. Mediation can help divorcing couples divide their property and resolve other issues without blood on the field, so they are able to move forward without excessive anger and frustration.

Mediation Can Resolve Your Case More Quickly

In Arizona, a couple can theoretically get divorced in just 60 days. But, that assumes that they have all of their issues resolved and present an agreement to the court for approval. If you have to schedule a contested final hearing in your divorce case, it will take much longer to get on the court calendar. And, you will need more time to prepare your case. If mediation is successful, the parties come away with an agreement to submit to the court, which can substantially cut down the time between deciding to divorce and receiving your divorce decree.

What if Mediation Fails?

Divorce Mediation Attorney’s in Phoenix

Most divorce mediation is successful, at least in resolving some of the contested issues in the divorce case. Even if you don’t reach a complete resolution, reaching an agreement on some issues can reduce the stress, conflict, time, and expense associated with finalizing your divorce.

But, what if you don’t reach an agreement? In the unlikely event that you don’t resolve anything through mediation, there’s no harm done. Mediation isn’t nearly as time consuming as litigation, so giving it a try won’t set back your timeline significantly. And, nothing either party says in mediation can be admitted as evidence in the divorce case except by agreement, so you don’t have to worry that anything that happens during the mediation process will come back to haunt you.

Schedule Mediation Today


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With our support and guidance, your divorce process is not just confidential, but simple, affordable, and non-confrontational.

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