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Divorce Mediation (with or without Attorneys), in Southwest Florida

Florand Mediation provides services for couples working with or without Attorneys. Attorneys are not necessary for the mediation process. As a Florida Supreme Court Certified Family Mediator, Christina is trained to help with Dissolution of Marriage (Divorce) paperwork to get you to a Final Hearing. This includes Equitable Distribution of Homes or Businesses, IRA's/401k's, QDRO assistance, and Alimony. If you have children, Parenting Plans and Child Support Guidelines are completed in Mediation as well. Your entire divorce can be handled from start to finish in mediation. If you have hired an attorney and they are unable to reach an agreement with the opposing attorney, your case will be set for mediation. In Florida, judges require mediation prior to hearing your case. They do this in an effort to allow you to decide what is best for your family and your assets, before ruling in what may or may not be your favor.

Divorce Mediation

Navigating a divorce in Florida can feel like a daunting task. It's a process that demands careful consideration of numerous factors including child timesharing, division of assets, and spousal support. But don't worry, Florand Mediation, LLC is here to help you through it. The firm offers mediation services, an alternative to traditional litigation or the use of an attorney, and assists couples across Southwest Florida. 

Mediation isn't about winners or losers. Instead, it's a cooperative method that promotes open communication and compromise. With the assistance of a neutral third party, couples work together (from the same room or separate rooms) to reach an agreement that respects the needs and interests of everyone involved. Your net worth can be 10 thousand or 10 million. Have a business or multiple homes? We've handled it all!

Florand Mediation, LLC extends its services to a broad range of communities in Southwest Florida. This includes the cities of Sarasota and Venice, as well as Bradenton, Nokomis, Osprey, North Port, and Port Charlotte. The firm also reaches out to residents of St. Petersburg, Clearwater, and Tampa. With a deep understanding of the local communities and a commitment to providing accessible and compassionate services, Christina Florand has established herself as a trusted resource for those seeking mediation in the region. Contact her office today to schedule a consultation and discuss your options. 

Divorce in Florida 

To be eligible to file for divorce in Florida, at least one spouse must have lived in the state for a minimum of six months prior to filing. This residency requirement ensures that Florida courts have jurisdiction over your divorce proceedings. It is also worth noting that Florida does not require a coupe to be separated prior to filing. There is not a timeframe or law requiring a legal separation.

Now, when it comes to grounds for divorce, Florida is a "no-fault" divorce state. This means that either you or your spouse can seek a divorce without having to prove any reason other than they no longer wish to be married; the terms often used are "irretrievably broken" or "incompatible". This makes it easier for couples to end their marriages without the need to blame one another for the breakdown of the relationship. 

It's important to note that while Florida's no-fault law simplifies the process of obtaining a divorce, it doesn't mean that the divorce itself will be simple. Issues like child support, division of assets, and alimony can still be complex and emotionally charged. This is where mediation can be particularly beneficial. 

What Is Mediation? 

So, let's talk about what mediation really is. It's a voluntary alternative dispute resolution process where a trained mediator facilitates communication between the divorcing parties. Christina Florand, whose background is in psychology and criminology, works as a neutral third party to help Florida couples identify concerns, explore potential solutions, and reach agreements on various aspects of the divorce. This isn't a courtroom drama; it's a conversation. 

Unlike litigation, mediation allows you to maintain control over the outcome of your divorce. It's a safe and confidential space for open dialogue, making space for all voices to be heard. Ultimately, mediation is about crafting a solution that works for everyone.  

Benefits of Divorce Mediation 

Because of these definitive traits, choosing mediation for your divorce also comes with a surplus of benefits:  

  • It's far more cost-effective than traditional litigation, saving you from lengthy court battles and hefty attorney fees. Hiring an attorney will typically run about $450 dollars per person per hour. If a case goes to trial this number will easily grow into 10's of thousands of dollars. Mediation costs $250 dollars per hour and is split by the parties.

  • Mediation also puts you in the driver's seat, allowing you to schedule sessions at your convenience and avoid court delays.

  • Mediation promotes amicability and cooperation, reducing conflict and fostering mutual respect. This is especially beneficial for couples with children as it helps minimize the negative impact of divorce on their well-being.  

  • It allows for more creative and tailored solutions. In mediation, couples can come up with unique agreements that work best for their individual circumstances rather than being bound by cookie-cutter court decisions. 

  • Mediation is a MUCH faster process, taking anywhere from a few weeks to a few months, compared to the potentially years-long timeline of traditional litigation. Most cases are completed in one day of mediation and a final hearing is set in 4-8 weeks.

  • Mediation is confidential, so you can avoid airing personal issues in a public courtroom setting. This also allows for more honest and open communication between parties. When parties are not comfortable being in the same room, Christina will have parties in separate conference rooms and conduct the mediation by going back and forth, so that each person has a comfortable, stress free environment to think clearly in.

The Mediation Process: An Overview 

Divorce mediation is a process where you and your spouse work together to negotiate the terms of your divorce, with the help of a neutral third party - the mediator. At Florand Mediation, LLC, Christina Florand serves as that impartial guide, assisting couples in Southwest Florida, from Sarasota to Tampa, in navigating this challenging journey. 

  1. The process begins with a Free 30-minute Phone Consultation. This is where Christina explains how mediation works, what to expect, and answers any questions you may have. She'll establish ground rules to ensure the sessions remain respectful and productive at the mediation itself. 

  1. Once the groundwork is laid, the real work begins. You and your spouse will select a date to meet with Christina to discuss all aspects of your divorce. This includes everything from division of assets and debts to child support and timesharing, and any other matters unique to your situation. Christina's role isn't to make decisions for you. Instead, she facilitates open and honest discussion, helping both parties express their needs and concerns. She guides the conversation, helping everything remain focused and constructive.  

  1. Once all issues are addressed and agreements are reached, Christina drafts a Marital Settlement Agreement also referred to as an MSA. This document outlines all the terms of your divorce and is submitted to the court for final approval. 

Throughout the process, Christina remains neutral, ensuring a fair and balanced negotiation. Once all relevant issues are addressed and agreements reached, she drafts a comprehensive divorce agreement. This agreement is then reviewed by each party's respective attorneys (if the parties are using attorneys) before being submitted to the court for final approval. 

What Will Be Addressed During Divorce Mediation? 

Divorce mediation covers all aspects that need to be addressed to reach a marital settlement agreement. These may include:   

  • parenting plans

  • child support  

  • health and life insurance changes

  • division of assets and debts 

  • quit claim deeds

  • splitting of IRA's and 401k's with the use of a QDRO to avoid penalties

  • spousal support, and  

  • any other matters unique to your situation. 

Christina Florand will guide you through these issues, making sure both parties have a voice and their concerns are taken into account. The goal is to reach agreements that are fair, practical, and in the best interests of all parties involved, especially any children. 

Divorce Mediator in Southwest Florida 

A positive and practical approach to divorce mediation is crucial for a successful outcome. It's important to listen, communicate openly, and consider each other's perspectives. During mediation, the focus is on practical solutions that address the specific needs and interests of the couple. Christina Florand can help explore various options and guide you in building creative and customized solutions that work for your family. Reach out today to schedule a Free 30-Minute phone consultation.