How Long After Mediation Does a Divorce Become Final?

June 16th • 7 min read

If you and your spouse believe that you have differences that are irreconcilable, you may decide to go through the divorce process. Even though you might be able to come to an agreement on some issues, you might not be able to agree on everything. One of the ways to avoid a trial and come to an agreement is to attend mediation.

You may be wondering how long will it take for your divorce to become final if you go through the mediation process? Take a look at a few key points below, and remember to work with a divorce attorney who can make sure your voice is heard and that your rights are protected in the state of Florida.

mediation

It Depends on the Success of the Mediation

First, it is important to understand that just because you go to mediation doesn't mean that an agreement is going to be reached. Mediation is designed to make it easier for you to understand the other party and figure out what the biggest sticking points are. Mediation is also designed to make the negotiation process a bit more professional. Even the best mediators cannot guarantee that an agreement will be reached.

If an agreement is not reached through the mediation process, then there is no timeline for when the divorce might be finalized. Even though there are lots of couples who come to an agreement through the mediation process, there are also couples who leave the mediation table without an agreement being reached.

Assuming the mediation process is successful, what does the timeline look like in Florida?

The Final Agreement Must Be Drafted

Once an agreement has been reached through the mediation process, it is time to draft the agreement. For example, the mediator may have helped the spouses come to an agreement on issues such as spousal support, property division, and child custody. The attorneys will work together to draft a final agreement that represents everything that has been discussed.

If you are going through this process, make sure you take a look at the final agreement as well. You need to make sure that you understand what you are agreeing to. If you have questions about anything, be sure to talk to your attorney. If your attorney believes that the agreement is in line with what you have discussed, he or she may recommend that you sign the agreement.

The Court Needs To Review the Document

Once the agreement has been finalized, it will be time to submit it to family court. The judge will then finalize the dissolution of marriage after taking a closer look at a few important issues. Some of the questions the judge will have to answer include:

  • Does it look like each spouse has entered the agreement of his or her own volition?
  • Are all of the terms fair? Do the terms appear to be in compliance with all of the laws in the state of Florida?
  • Does it look like the agreement is unfairly biased toward one spouse or the other?
  • Did the mediator do his or her job appropriately, or was the mediator biased toward one party?

Unfortunately, there are some situations where one party may try to bully the other party into an agreement. This typically takes place when one party has more money or better legal representation. It is the job of the judge to make sure that this does not happen.

Issues Involving Children

If there are issues involving children, the judge will need to take a closer look at these issues as well. Divorces involving children are usually more complicated because the judge also has to make sure the divorce is in the best interest of the child. Some of the questions the judge will need to answer include:

  • Does the child custody arrangement act in the best interests of the child?
  • Is the child support agreement in the best interests of the child?
  • Has the safety of the child been protected?
  • Does the child have all of the support he or she requires?

These questions will need to be answered before the divorce moves forward.

Going Through the Waiting Period

Finally, if you and your spouse have come to an agreement relatively quickly, you may still need to wait for the waiting period to go by. Fortunately, the state of Florida does not have a very long waiting period. You simply need to wait 20 days before everything can be finalized. If you have decided to go through mediation, you have probably already passed the waiting period, so you should expect the attorneys and the court system to work to finalize the agreement relatively quickly.

If you have questions about whether you need to wait longer, you simply need to reach out to your attorney.

Why Should You Go Through Mediation?

Ultimately, the exact amount of time that it takes to finalize the divorce following a successful period of mediation depends on a variety of factors. Some of the reasons why you should consider going to mediation include:

  • You might have an easier time coming to a divorce agreement with your spouse if you work with a mediator who can identify and solve big issues.
  • You might be able to keep the divorce proceedings more private by working with a mediator who can keep everything behind closed doors. This will also make it easier for people to speak freely.
  • A mediator can also help you save money. If you go to trial as a result of the divorce, the bills can pile up. Getting everything solved through mediation can help you save a significant amount of money.

For all of these reasons, you should consider working with a mediator who can help you. If this is something you are interested in, you should talk with a Florida divorce attorney.

Work With a Ross & Andreassi for Mediation and Divorce Services in Florida

If you want to make sure that your rights are protected, you need to work with a legal professional who provides mediation and divorce services. At Ross & Andreassi, we have a tremendous amount of experience working with couples of all backgrounds, and we can help you make sure your rights are protected as well. We will work with you personally, walking you through every step of the process while answering your questions and concerns.

If you would like to learn more about how we can help you during the divorce process in Florida, contact us today for a case consultation.