FAQs ABOUT MEDIATION
Do I need an attorney to get divorced?
Mediators do not give legal advice. We advise parties to consult with an attorney if there is a question regarding legal rights. However, there is no law in Texas requiring you to get an attorney at any point during your divorce!
How much does divorce mediation cost?
The average cost of divorce with children in Texas is $23,500, including $19,800 in attorney fees. When you mediate with Storch Mediation Services we give you a flat rate for divorce mediation to help you plan your expenses.
Who pays for mediation?
Most choose to split the cost of mediation. However, it’s up to you and your spouse to decide who pays for family mediation.
I already have a lawyer. Can I still try mediation?
Absolutely and we welcome attorneys .Sometimes clients already have a lawyer but negotiations are at a standstill with the other party. You or your lawyer might suggest that you try mediation with your ex-spouse to try and move the negotiations forward. In this situation, if you and your spouse attempted mediation, we would discuss whether it would be useful to have your lawyers present at the mediation session. Both parties make separate appointments with me, so I can understand their individual issues of concern, and discuss topics that need to be discussed in confidence. Provided both parties are comfortable, we will then schedule the first mediation session at a mutually-convenient time.
How does the mediation practice begin?
Both parties will confirm their agreement to participate in the mediation. Once both parties are comfortable, we will schedule the first mediation session at a mutually convenient time and location.
Can I use mediation to negotiate a pre-nuptial agreement or marriage contract with my spouse?
You most certainly can! I believe that mediation is an excellent process for negotiating a prenuptial agreement, cohabitation agreement or marriage contract. One of the most difficult things to do is to talk about one of these agreements with someone you love and care about. When clients hire lawyers to help them negotiate a prenuptial agreement or cohabitation agreement, sometimes statements can be misinterpreted and feelings can be hurt. With mediation, you are both receiving the same information at the same time. Mediation allows you both to talk through your concerns with each other without lawyers. Once you have reached a deal in mediation, then your mediator will draft the agreement. You will then take it to your own lawyers for independent legal advice and signing.
Will our agreement be enforceable?
Once an agreement has been signed, that agreement is enforceable. The agreement will be prepared and filed with the court and is enforceable as any other divorce judgment.
What if my spouse is very overpowering or abusive?
The mediator will not allow one party to overpower the other in mediation. If one of the parties is unable to be effective during this process, the mediator will stop the mediation. However, many persons who considered themselves to be the "weaker" of the two spouses have been quite effective in mediation. There is also the option to conduct the entire mediation with the two parties in separate rooms the entire time.
What about my case? It is way too complex.
No case is too complex to be settled using mediation. Often the parties in mediation consult with outside experts such as accountants, financial planners, and attorneys during the process.
We can’t agree on anything! How are we going to mediate?
There are many couples that mediate that are amicable and work well in mediation but there are an equal amount of couples that are very emotional about the divorce and don't think they can negotiate face to face. As part of every qualified mediator's training, we learn to assist couples who have high emotions but who still would like to work things out in a peaceful manner. People do calm down and become effective mediation participants when they see that the process can work without adding to the high emotional and financial cost of divorce. As an added bonus, Katherine Storch is working on her degree in Psychology to ensure an even more peaceful experience.
What if we don’t agree on everything?
Generally, parties end up agreeing on all but one or two issues, but even if that is not the case mediation is not wasted. An agreement can be prepared on all settled issues, and the parties can either litigate the remaining issues or take further time to think about them and come back to mediation.