Looking for divorce mediation services in San Mateo? You’re in luck.

You’re in luck because you’re in California, a community property state. And that makes the division of assets simple in that everything acquired during the marriage, both assets and debts, are split 50/50. Sometimes there’s nothing to fight over and the same is often true with the children. The presumption in California is that parents will share their children 50/50 because study after study has indicated that’s what’s best for them. Every case is different, of course, and while it’s not appropriate in every single case, it should be fairly straight forward. And when something or someone prevents the process from being fairly straight forward, that’s what mediation and collaborative law are there for. I learned in my negotiation mastery class that mediation is negotiation. I facilitate that but the actual negotiation requires that both parties show up willing and ready. It takes 2 people to be reasonable for a successful mediation.

So you’d like to pursue divorce mediation in San Mateo. When is the optimal time to start?

There’s often a narrow timeframe in which a case can easily settle and it’s early on in the process. But sometimes the couple simply cannot settle right away because one or the other or both first has to say everything they want to say, make their jabs and be recalcitrant. In those situations it’s good to step back, maybe hit the pause button, or else start with little issues. I’ve learned that if you can find anything that they can agree on, no matter how small, you can start chipping away at what can feel like a mountain of decisions to be negotiated.

Are all divorce mediation firms in San Mateo the same?

One of the ways in which I do things a little unconventionally with our divorce mediation process in San Mateo is upfront, I ask each of the parties: what do you want to get out of this process? Often they’re taken aback because they’re armed for battle and completely unprepared to be asked what they want. In addition to being instructive, I find it can soften the atmosphere. It’s good for everyone to listen to what’s important for the other side as well as to state what’s important to you. Sometimes it helps an agreement come together quite easily.

Without a doubt the easiest divorce mediation to resolve is one between parties who’ve been married a long time. Everything is pretty much community property at that point, the kids are grown and gone, people are getting ready to retire, and everyone waives spousal support. If only they were all so simple!

Who should not seek divorce mediation services in San Mateo?

Occasionally we’re asked to mediate a divorce and it’s clear from the beginning it’s not going to work. For instance, if you’re divorcing a narcissist, forget it. One of the definitive traits of narcissistic personality disorder is manipulative and controlling behavior. Successful mediation is ultimately about cooperation, not control and manipulation.

Similarly, if domestic violence has occurred, mediation is not the right approach because for the sake of safety, the abuser and the victim should not have contact with each other.

As I said earlier, successful mediation requires 2 people to be reasonable. So if you’re divorcing a narcissist or you’re a victim of domestic violence, head straight to divorce.

Search divorce mediation services San Mateo and you’ll find Laughlin Legal right at the top.

You’ll find us there for a reason, and not because we paid or sponsored our way there, but because we’re deeply experienced in mediation and collaborative law. If you or someone you love is headed for divorce, learn more about how the divorce mediation services we offer in San Mateo can best represent you and your values. Call us now at 650.343.3486 to schedule a consultation with us. If you’d prefer, you can email us to set up your appointment. If we miss your call, we will respond promptly and call you back as soon as possible.

Laughlin Legal Family Law Group
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