Divorce Mediation is Not Just About Saving Money

Divorce mediation is an affordable and flexible alternative to traditional litigation, which is why a growing number of couples are choosing this option. Mediation is not just for people who “cannot afford an attorney” however. In my practice, I work with many high net worth couples who want to maintain more control over the outcome of their divorce, and do not want to spend their hard-earned cash on exorbitant attorney fees. [Read more…]

When is a Good Time to Start Divorce Mediation?

For many divorcing spouses, mediation can be an affordable and time-saving alternative to costly and protracted litigation. There is a common misconception, however, about when to start divorce mediation. Many believe that they must have everything worked out first before beginning the process.

Recently, I received a call from someone looking to come in with their spouse to begin mediation. He said, “We are almost in agreement on the last issue, so we are almost ready to come in”. [Read more…]

If Jen & Ben Affleck Can Mediate Their Divorce, So Can You!

Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner recently filed for divorce, but as People Magazine reports, they have chosen to officially represent themselves in the filing, and handle the dissolution of their marriage as amicably as possible. I applaud them for using divorce mediation, and for choosing to keep the details of their divorce private.

Divorce mediation is becoming increasingly mainstream, even among high net worth couples such as Ben and Jen and other celebrities. Gone are the days when it is assumed that saving money is the only reason to consider mediation. [Read more…]

How Should You Celebrate your Children’s Birthdays After a Divorce?

As a divorce mediator, I work closely with couples to develop a settlement that works best for them. And when I begin working with a divorcing couple who have children, the first thing I do is establish a parenting plan. I do this first for a number of reasons.

First of all, I like to start with a topic in which the parents are likely to be on the same page; after all, nearly every parent wants what is best for their children. Secondly, children are not “negotiables”, and I do not allow them to be negotiated for anything. [Read more…]

Divorce Can Create Stronger Family Values

I am a true believer that when divorce is approached in a thoughtful and reasonable way, there can definitely be positive outcomes. It’s all a matter of how two people go about it and what their end goals are. One of the things I love most about being a divorce mediator is that I get to work with couples in a way that will enable them to strengthen their family bonds rather than pull them apart.  [Read more…]

Divorce Issues Are Not Really About the Law

Divorce is technically a legal proceeding, and once it is completed, the state recognizes the marriage as dissolved. But although the process is legal, the issues within a divorce have less to do with the law, and more to do with other factors. Among them include emotions, finances, and personal circumstances. [Read more…]

Divorce is NOT “One Size Fits All”

Divorce is almost always a difficult and emotional process. The uncertainty of “what comes next” tends to create a lot of stress for divorcing spouses. In addition, each circumstance is unique, and the wants and needs of the spouses vary from case to case. This can make it especially difficult to come to a satisfactory resolution through traditional processes.  [Read more…]

What are the Holidays Like for Children of Divorced Parents?

This month, I’ve invited author and freelance writer Paul Lindquist to write a guest post about what it was like for him during the holidays as a child of divorced parents. Paul has agreed to share his insights on how he experienced the holidays both before and after his parents were divorced, and how these experiences remain with him to this day. Take it away Paul… [Read more…]

Being Thankful Even When Going through a Divorce

Thanksgiving is supposed to be a time when we take a step back and reflect on everything we have to be thankful for. This can be difficult, however, when you are going through trying times. For example, if you are in the middle of a divorce, or recently finalized a divorce, your whole world may be turned upside down. [Read more…]

How to Help Your Kids Cope through a Divorce

Dissolving a marriage takes an emotional toll on everyone involved, including (and especially) the children. Kids react in a number of ways to divorce, depending on their age, personality, and the specific family dynamics and circumstances. Initially, the reaction is often one of shock, anger, worry, fear, sadness, frustration, uncertainty [Read more…]

Divorce Mediation: The Importance of Life Insurance in the Divorce Settlement

September has been deemed by the insurance industry as Life Insurance Awareness Month, so I thought this would be a good time to discuss life insurance as it relates to the dissolution of a marriage. When I enter into divorce mediation with a couple, one of the things I ask for are specifics on their life insurance policies.  [Read more…]

CASA for Children of Mercer and Burlington Names Roseann Vanella as Board President

style=EWING, NJ, Sept. 20, 2016 — The Board of Trustees of Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) for Children of Mercer and Burlington Counties has appointed Roseann Vanella, founder of Advanced Mediation Solutions,  as president.  Ms. Vanella succeeds Andrea Stine of Morgan Stanley, who will remain on the board after having served as president for the past two years.  The board also appointed four new members.  They are Digesh Patel of Mercadien, who will serve as treasurer; Deena Betze of Borger Matez; Gregory Grimaldi of Conner Strong & Buckelew and Jane Massi of M&T Bank.

“This is a very exciting time for CASA of Mercer and Burlington! “ said Ms. Vanella. “We have brought together a very dynamic and cohesive team of passionate and dedicated board members along with our newly appointed Executive Director Katherine Carmichael. We are all dedicated to significantly growing the number of children served in both counties and will not rest until each child in need of advocacy has a CASA”  Read More

Divorce Mediation: Personal Solutions for a Personal Matter

Getting a divorce is a giant step for both parties, and the way you work out the terms and conditions of the settlement will have a major impact on your lives (and the lives of your children if you have any) going forward. When marriages are dissolved through the court system, those involved tend to take a “cookie cutter” approach to the settlement process, using pre-determined formulas [Read more…]

Divorce, The Raw Truth About Going Through the Court System

I am a Professional Family and Divorce Mediator because I truly believe mediation is the best possible way to divorce.

I truly believe that the divorce process does not have to be adversarial.

I truly believe that children’s lives do not have to be ruined because their parents have decided to divorce and get caught up in a process that is promoting adversarial behavior. [Read more…]

How Divorce Mediation Can Help When a Spouse is Resisting the Inevitable

Divorce is a messy process. It is never easy to dissolve your marriage, leave behind the life you have known since you were first married and face an uncertain future. And if children are involved, the prospect of a permanent separation becomes all the more difficult.  [Read more…]

Parenting Time in Divorce: It Cannot Always Be Shared 50/50

One of the biggest issues I deal with in divorce mediation is parenting time when creating a parenting plan. Couples often come to me seeking a 50/50 parenting time schedule, where the divorcing spouses have joint custody and each parent has the children for 50% of the time. [Read more…]

Mediating Business Agreements Through Divorce or Separately

There are over 2 million businesses in the United States that are owned by a husband and wife. And because a significant percentage of marriages end in divorce, the family business all too often becomes an additional source of stress for divorcing spouses. As a professional divorce mediator, I have mediated numerous divorces involving a business partnership, and I can tell you that the process need not be stressful, if you adopt the right approach. [Read more…]

The Best Time to Divorce for Children

In my years as a divorce mediator, there are few issues I have seen that are more contentious than what to do with the children. So many questions need to be answered; such as who will retain physical and legal custody? Does joint custody make sense? Can we come up with a parenting time schedule [Read more…]

Elder Mediation: Helping Families Resolve Senior Care Issues

With the Baby Boomer population entering full retirement, America’s elderly population is growing exponentially. This trend is putting a huge strain on families. Many working couples are faced with having to balance multiple jobs, raising kids, and caring for aging parents. And because the health of elderly individuals tends to deteriorate quickly, [Read more…]

Using Mediation for High Net Worth Divorces

For divorcing spouses with financial means, the first inclination is often to hire the best divorce attorney money can buy. However, a long and protracted divorce proceeding is usually not in your best interests. For one thing, if both of you come to the table with expensive lawyers, they have a vested interest in dragging out the process; [Read more…]

6 Important Steps in Preparing for a Divorce

Ending a marriage is a major step; once you go through with your divorce, life as you know if will change forever. You will need to consider your living situation post-divorce, the kind of relationship you want with your (soon-to-be) ex-spouse, the children, and numerous other areas. Here are some essential steps you should take when preparing for a divorce: [Read more…]

Divorce, A Life Changing New Year’s Resolution

The holidays are over and the New Year is upon us. For some, this means it is time to pay down the credit card bills. Others have a list of New Year’s resolutions to work on. For some couples, a major resolution for the New Year is to finally put the past behind them and move on with a pending divorce. Maybe you can relate.
Have you been struggling in your relationship with your spouse? Have you tried counseling, trial separations, and made other attempts to save your marriage? [Read more…]

Creating Parenting Plans through Mediation

Mediation is fast becoming a popular alternative for divorcing couples. Mediation offers a supportive, cooperative environment that promotes direct, clear communication between the two parties. But whether you decide on mediation for your entire divorce process or not, mediating the parenting plan is still often a good option.
During a divorce, attorneys do not always devote a lot of time to the parenting plan. [Read more…]

Using Mediation to Create a Premarital or Prenuptial Agreement

Prenuptial agreements (also known as premarital agreements) are useful tools for protecting the interests of marrying spouses in the event of a worst case scenario. However, there are certain challenges spouses sometimes run into while drafting such agreements. For example, if one spouse (or worse, the family of one of the spouses) insists on a prenup, but the other spouse sees it as an attempt to avoid [Read more…]