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After over 20 years of being an Oregon divorce mediator (who happens to be an attorney, too), I have seen plenty of mistakes. 

Knowing these mistakes ahead of time — and how to avoid them — is the best way to begin your divorce mediation on the right foot. 

From my team at Mediation Northwest, here are the top 5 most common mistakes people make in divorce mediation.

1. Assuming what is best for you is also best for your kids.

Your kids have different wants and needs than you. 

Yes, you love your kids and would take a bullet for your kids. But that doesn’t mean your needs are their needs. 

For instance, moving to a new school district so that you no longer need to drive 30 minutes to the same job that you’ve held for many years isn’t about them; it’s about you. Bringing your new love interest around the kids as a “friend” within months of the split, isn’t about them; it’s about you.

Keeping your kids’ interest top of mind will not only make the divorce mediation process smoother, but also also help in the long run.

2. Refusing to pay a few hundred dollars for a valuation that could save you tens of thousands of dollars.

Too many people in a divorce are so focused on making it “easy” that they refuse to get all the information. 

If you don’t know how much the house or the pension is worth, then getting an appraisal for a few hundred dollars will likely to save you tens of thousands of dollars!

Don’t sell yourself short. Get the valuation done so that you have all the information you need at your disposal.

3. Coming in “hot” with an offer to settle the divorce with little (or no) information to base it upon.

I fully appreciate wanting to quickly finalize a divorce. 

But how can the other party determine if the offer is fair unless all the information is on the table? It’s similar to trying to purchase a house without looking at sale prices of similar homes. How does anyone analyze an offer? By looking at information.

It’s better for both parties to sit down with an experienced Oregon divorce mediator figure out a solution that works best for everyone together.

4. Expecting your divorce isn’t going to cost much.

Mediation will greatly reduce the costs of your divorce, but it won’t be free, nor will it be close to free. 

Heck, your kid’s orthodontia bill is $5,000. Your refinance costs are $5,000. Your new hot water tank is $7,000. 

Your divorce will cost you several thousand dollars, too.

5. Expecting one professional can handle EVERYTHING in your divorce.

If you or your spouse has retirement that needs to be divided or valued, a business that needs to be analyzed or valued, or if outstanding tax liabilities exist, then you need to embrace the reality that more than one professional will be necessary to be involved in your divorce. 

Hiring one set of experts greatly reduces the costs while still providing the necessary information.

Contact an Oregon divorce attorney mediator today

I designed Mediation Northwest to be a boutique divorce mediation firm. We handle our clients’ matters from beginning to end. Our clients never see the courthouse, their divorce is handled in a timely manner, and they know exactly how much their divorce will cost. We want to help you cut through the drama of divorce. Ready to get started? Click here to schedule a consultation.

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