So How Long's Your Divorce Mediation Going to Take?

How long will it take to get divorced when using divorce mediation?   Divorce mediation is a quicker path to get divorced, and if time is an important factor then you should consider divorce mediation.  

Once you have started the mediation these are the timeframes you can expect.  

Each session is about 90 minutest to 2 hours long, max.  Trust me, after 2 hours everybody including me are ready to go.

Depending on the issues involved, and the parties, they need anywhere from three to six sessions to complete the mediation, reserving the final two sessions for reviewing the agreement, and then signatures,  and preparing for the final hearing.  

But back to the question at hand.  How quickly can you get divorced?  Well it’s really up to you, and the court.   Up to you because the pace that the sessions are scheduled is up to the parties and the mediator’s schedule.  They can be scheduled days apart, weeks apart or months apart.  It's up to the court because once you file for divorce with the court there is a statutory 90 day waiting period that starts counting from your return date.  The return date is the name that the court uses as the divorce start date.  So normally at the earliest you can’t get divorced until after the 90 day waiting period.  But there is a procedure where if you have an agreement, and if all of your stuff is in order, you can ask the court to waive that 90 day waiting period and get your final hearing date scheduled ASAP.  Rome was not built in a day, but you could get divorced in one.  Don't believe me, I'll show you.

So a couple can walk into the court’s clerk’s office to file their paperwork to start the divorce.  Additionally they can request the waiver of the 90 day waiting period.  If they have all of the necessary paperwork completed, and the judge grants the waiver than they are ready to get a divorce.  If the court could accommodate them that day, then they can get divorced.  I bet you didn't believe me.  

Now, normally, it takes a little more time to get your final date after that waiver is granted depending on the court’s availability, but just know that having an agreement ready and all of your T's crossed and I's dotted gives you the opportunity to expedite your divorce.  

What I want you to take away is that divorce mediation is:

  • Almost always quicker than litigation.  No waiting all day for a hearing to be heard.  No wasted time preparing for hearings, depositions, and trials.  
  • The pace of divorce mediation is really up to the parties.  It can go as fast or as slow as you want. 
  • If you wait to complete the mediation before filing for divorce that’s the best scenario because there are procedures in place where you can request an immediate hearing date.  But don't worry if you start mediation after you have filed for divorce your mediator can still work within your timeframe.



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