Barbara J. Katzenberg, Attorney at Law
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Mediation may be beneficial in post-divorce conflict resolution

Parents in Massachusetts who chose to utilize the services of a mediator to resolve issues during their divorce may have come away with negotiation skills they did not have before. While this may equip them with the ability to work out everyday issues that may arise after the divorce, additional mediation may be required for conflict resolution when major events occur. These may include serious illness, loss of employment, parental relocation or the remarriage of one parent.

When such events occur, existing agreements may have to be reconsidered and adjusted. When significant financial changes take place, child support may have to be adjusted, and in some cases, a previously negotiated settlement agreement may have to be modified. Because these modifications often center around finances, a mediator's guidance may avoid prolonged conflict or even litigation.

Regardless of the type of modification required, the best interests of the children will remain the primary consideration. Child support modification will only be allowed in cases of significant financial changes such as job loss or unexpected illness. When one parent remarries or wants to relocate, custody arrangements and parenting plans may need to be adjusted to suit new circumstances. When ex-spouses want to make extensive changes to a divorce judgment, the guidance of a mediator can be invaluable.

When divorced parents decide to consult with a mediator for post-divorce conflict resolution, they are fully entitled to have their attorneys present. Not only will the attorneys oversee the legalities of new agreements, but their active participation in the negotiations may prove invaluable. While all divorced couples in Massachusetts may not need post-divorce mediation, those who do may benefit greatly -- both emotionally and financially.

Source: mediate.com, "When You Might Need Mediation After Divorce", Cris Pastore, Accessed on Feb. 28, 2015

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