When divorce happens where children are involved, the relationship is never quite over. During the divorce, one of the most critical decisions you will need to make is your child’s living arrangements going forward.
Depending on the circumstances of your divorce, you may leave this decision to the court or strike a custody deal out of the courtroom through mediation. Basically, child custody mediation is the process of discussing and reaching a custody plan without involving the court. Although it will likely be ordered by the Court, custody mediation is not for everyone. If you are hoping for a successful custody mediation, it is important that you take these tips to heart.
Put the best interests of the child first
No matter how you feel about your soon-to-be ex, it is important that you keep the following in mind. First, that your child had nothing to do with the divorce. Secondly, your child deserves the love and care of both parents. As such, everything you discuss pertaining to your child’s post-divorce living arrangements must focus on the best interests of the child.
Come to the mediation table with clear expectations
With your child’s best interests in mind, come to the mediation table with a clear set of expectations as well as what you are willing to compromise on. How do you wish to share custody? What about decisions regarding the child? Which decisions will either parent make alone and which ones will you consult on?
Protecting your interests
Mediating child custody can be a viable option if you do not want to go through a protracted court process. Learning how to prepare for custody mediation can help you realize the best possible custody plan that works for everyone and serves the best interests of the child. You should seek out the advice of counsel if you need additional help in preparing for and attending custody mediation.