781.708.4445

wmlevine@levinedisputeresolution.com

Divorce Mediation Blog

Filing and Service of a Divorce Complaint During Mediation: It’s Not a Sin

Friday, July 20, 2012

We have been thinking a lot lately about what some see as mutually inconsistent behaviors: the filing and service of a divorce complaint during mediation. There are many reasons why a person may feel a need to file while mediating because of a host of rules and statutes that filing and service trigger, such as asset restraining orders, mandatory document exchanges, the running of certain waiting periods and quite recently, the fixing of “length of marriage” for application of Massachusetts’ new alimony laws.

Many mediation clients may feel that such a filing and service is hostile to the notions of good faith meditation, which objectively stated, is not always the case. Yet, meditation clients enter the process because they need to deal with each other; and that includes the attitudes that each of them may hold on this very subject. Each person needs to make cost benefit decisions throughout, and this is just one of many.

The role that the mediator plays in either introducing this topic to the parties or in addressing it when raised by one of them (or by counsel) bears more critical thinking. We believe that mediators should not handicap their clients with a doctrinaire view that assigns ill motives to the person who is considering, or should be considering, a filing. Rather, neutral professionals have an obligation to encourage transparency, solid information and informed decisions, including this one.

This subject is a complex and layered one and we are working on a longer and far more detailed treatment of this important aspect of mediation, cutting across the spectrum of family law, and we will post it here after its publication.



Get e-mail notifications of new blog posts! Enter email address below.:



Delivered by FeedBurner

other articles


recent posts


tags

Massachusetts alimony alimony family mediation divorce process Boston General term alimony mediations Divorce family law alimony orders Act Reforming Alimony in the Commonwealth alimony statute arbitrators Levine Dispute Resolutions divorce lawyers litigation divorce arbitrator private dispute resolution family support Levine Dispute Resolution mediator DOMA Levine Dispute Resolution Center Divorce Agreements special master Massachusetts divorce lawyers The Seven Sins of Alimony Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly MLB labor agreement Uniform Arbitration Act Matrimonial Arbitration Baseball separation divorce arbitration resolve disputes divorce mediations traditional negotiations lawyers Chouteau Levine arbitration Alimony Reform Act divorce agreement med-arb rehabilitative alimony Obamacare conciliation Same Sex Marriage Family Law Arbitration Levine Dispute Resolution Center LLC lawyer-attended mediation health coverage alimony reform legislation facilitated negotiations health insurance Major League Baseball Arbitration pre-ARA alimony dispute resolution divorce mediators family and probate law disputes SJC family law arbitrator self-adjusting alimony fraud divorce and family law divorce mediator COLA Baseball Players divorce litigation med/arb Defense of Marriage Act divorced Baseball Arbitration child support divorce and family law mediators lawyer Massachusetts mediators divorce arbitrators Massachusetts Alimony Reform Act arbitrator Child Support Guidelines high-risk methodology disputes Massachusetts alimony and child support mediation Self-adjusting alimony orders how baseball arbitration works IRC §2704 Massachusetts lawyers family law arbitrators medical benefits LDRC divorce judgment Massachusetts divorce mediators divorce mediation family law mediation alimony law support orders Cohabitation annulment