Mediation and Collaborative Divorce

Mediation and Collaborative Divorce

Divorces can be contentious and lengthy, however, there are non-litigation related methods to resolving a divorce available including mediation and collaborative divorce. These methods are not without their negative attributes, but if a couple is resigned to not using the court system to resolve their divorce proceedings, these routes are viable options.

Mediation is a process through which a neutral attorney, or mediator, meets with the parties individually and/or together to determine what is available to be divided by way of assets, what liabilities exist, and what other issues must be resolved in order to resolve the divorce proceedings. The mediator will then determine what each party’s priorities and concerns are, and will facilitate an agreement between the parties. The mediator will encourage the parties to compromise, and all sessions will be geared toward resolving the issues by agreement.

Mediation can be a great option for truly amicable couples with non-complex issues; however, in a mediation situation, there is no one advocating for the respective parties’ interests, rather, the mediator is charged with facilitating an agreement through compromise.

An alternative to mediation is a collaborative divorce, which is a process through which both parties retain attorneys but agree not to file suit to resolve the case, but rather reach agreements on all issues. The parties and their attorneys will then meet to discuss and hash out agreeable terms to resolve the case. In this situation, each party has an attorney who is advocating for their interests; however, the court system is not available under the terms of the collaborative divorce model.

This is a great option, again, for a truly amicable couple who would prefer to have legal advice throughout the process; however, it is often necessary to turn to the Court to resolve certain legal issues, and agreements may not always be possible.


To schedule an appointment with one of our attorneys or for further information, call us at LaMonaca Law, at (610) 892-3877

About the author

About Alicia Fastman

Alicia Fastman graduated from Hofstra University with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, then went on to complete her Juris Doctorate at the Widener University School of Law in Wilmington, DE. Alicia graduated from law school with pro bono distinction, completed a Certificate in Criminal Law, and focused her intensive studies within the fields of litigation and trial advocacy. Alicia joined LaMonaca Law in April of 2011 and is a Partner at the firm. She was selected as a Top Lawyer in Main Line Magazine in 2014, 2016, 2017, and 2019 in the areas of Family Law and Divorce and has been named as a Best Lawyer in the areas of Adoption and Trial in the Delaware County Daily Times. Alicia is licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania, and is a member of the Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, and Delaware County Bar Associations. Alicia resides in Delaware County with her dog, Leonard. In her time outside of the courtroom or office, she enjoys creating art, listening to podcasts, and spending time with friends and family.