Average Cost Of Divorce Mediation
Average Cost Of Mediation Services Vs. Other Divorce Methods
If you're going through or considering a divorce, you know how stressful it can be to figure out the monetary and emotional cost of ending your marriage. You may be searching for the average cost of divorce mediation, or searching for mediator cost per hour, trying to find what option makes the most financial sense for you and your spouse. Instead of going through the back and forth of lawyers and months or years of court motions and appearances, you may be looking into the average cost of mediation services. When couples do the research and discover that mediation is a small fraction of the costs you will incur as a couple if you choose to each hire attorneys and litigate your divorce they are able to rethink their approach and consider mediation as a viable option.
At Leave Strong Divorce Services, I charge a flat fee of between $3,900 and $4,500 for your divorce mediation. Your flat mediation fee will be determined by the complexity of your divorce and whether you have children and you will know before you sign an Agreement to Mediate what your flat fee will be. The only other fee you will pay is the court filing fee. There are no hidden add-on costs and no up-front retainer; you pay in installments as you go for the mediator. You may need experts to help you value assets but a good mediator will have at her disposal a range of experts who can do a professional job acting as a neutral advisor to both of you which again cuts your costs in at least half as you do not need two experts. The cost of divorce mediation pales in comparison to the cost of going through a divorce using attorneys and the slow-moving court system. That can end up costing couples $50-$100,000 and in some highly contentious cases quite truly hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Those high costs of a litigated divorce come from a variety of sources. Lawyer’s fees account for a large portion of the money, of course, as family law lawyers in the San Diego area typically charge between $325-$600 an hour and will be working for dozens of hours on your behalf. They will also bill you for paralegal fees, administrative fees, office expenses, postage, photocopying and more. It will not be a flat fee. When you litigate your divorce there is often great expense for subpoenas and extensive discovery to identify assets, and this will escalate your overall legal fees and costs. Be sure to take absolutely every aspect of divorce into consideration when you draw up your estimates- and know that divorce mediation can keep all these costs down.
It's important to remember that when you're estimating the cost of mediation services, it will depend upon whether your mediator bills hourly or has a flat fee. The actual cost may end up being higher or lower depending on how quickly you and your spouse are able to work through the mediation process if your mediator bills hourly.
Hopefully, the information I have provided above will help you begin to answer the question, “What will my divorce cost me?” but also help you realize that without a flat fee process it may be very hard to estimate what your divorce will cost. No matter which path you choose be sure to ask yourself” “Is there a way I can divorce without going broke?” and “What will a conflict-managed, mediated divorce save me?" Though clients often save thousands of dollars by mediating their divorce, to just speak of the financial burden when considering the cost of divorce is too narrow a scope. What is the real cost of a litigated divorce?
The real costs of a litigated divorce are ultimately the less tangible ones. There is no accounting for the toll it can take on your health, career, children, friendships, and family ties. What most couples who litigated say in hindsight is: “If I had known what I know now, I would have found a way to divorce without litigation." You can always escalate to a litigated divorce if mediation does not work, but it is tough to de-escalate conflict and mediate once the battle lines are drawn. At Leave Strong Divorce Services, Laura here to help. Reach out today and book a complimentary Discovery Session to learn how the average cost of divorce meditation can be so much lower than a court battle- both monetarily and mentally.