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What is mediation?

Popular media and popular imagination often portray divorce as a contentious and bitter struggle, with both spouses fighting over everything from how to divide assets to who gets custody of the children and  using their attorneys as tools to spite one another. There may be some real-life situations like this, but in many cases the reasons for a married couple to end their marriage have nothing to do with hostility and mutual recrimination. In an amicable divorce, is the adversarial system of court always the best way to go?

The answer to that question is decidedly "No." Massachusetts allows soon-to-be former spouses an alternative to litigation in the form of mediation.

How does mediation work?

Mediation is a forum in which the spouses work together to cooperatively resolve questions and issues connected to their divorce, including child custody and support, spousal support, visitation rights, asset division and more. Any matter that can be addressed in a court decision can be addressed through mediation.

What are the benefits of using mediation?

Mediation offers multiple advantages over litigation for spouses who take advantage of it:

  • It is considerably less expensive than a court-imposed settlement.
  • It is faster than litigation.
  • You have considerably more control over the terms of the final settlement.

Can I be legally represented in mediation?

Generally, the role of an attorney, such as one of our lawyers at Antonioni & Antonioni, is to serve as the mediator instead of representing only one side. This is one of the key ways that mediation can cost less than a court solution in which both sides retain legal counsel.


It is a good idea to speak with an attorney should you have any questions relating to mediation or divorce proceedings.

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