Mediation provides a simple, hands-on approach to handling your divorce. If you are interested in learning more about divorce mediation in Houston, TX the Renken Law Firm can help you. Our team of divorce experts offer a wide range of divorce services to married couples who are looking for the best solution for their unique situation.
You will want to consider your options and think about your unique situation to determine what the best course of action is for your situation. If you have any questions or concerns about divorce mediation, schedule a consultation with our team.
We understand complex family dynamics, our team are experts at conflict resolution, and we have years of experience working with divorcing couples. When you are looking to find a mediator for your divorce, contact our office today.
You Want a Divorce Mediator Who Is an Educator: By initially educating you and your spouse on the law, a good divorce mediator would be focused on empowering you to make your own informed decisions. You would be informed on how the law applies to your particular facts and circumstances. Then, you would learn what would be the most likely result if you each hired your own divorce lawyer and went to court.
A Good Divorce Mediator Keeps The Playing Field Level: You want a neutral partner (not just a third-party) who ensures that all rights and interests of both spouses are being protected. In a sense, having a good divorce mediator is like having a strong “advocate” in each of your corners who is looking out for each of your best interests, as well as the entire family.
A marital settlement agreement that is legally binding, and not just a memorandum of understanding is also essential, in addition to having a divorce mediator who encourages you to have your agreement reviewed by a private divorce attorney. These steps allow you to feel like you have an additional layer of protection prior to signing your agreement.
Good Divorce Mediators Use a Clear and Practical Approach to “Fairness”: First, a good divorce mediator will validate your opinions regarding what you each believe is fair. They would engage you both in meaningful discussion and point out any matters that a court would view as unfair. They will then take a wholly practical view of your particular situation, what the realities are and what is truly at stake, and then a good divorce mediator helps you both to craft creative solutions you each envision for yourselves and your family post-divorce. It may be difficult to see it this way, but what is most fair may not actually be totally ideal for either one of you. But it will undoubtedly be a result that feels comfortable to you both and is something you can each live with.
A Good Divorce Mediation Firm Makes It Easy and Affordable For You: The cost of divorce is overwhelming enough, without having to worry about the cost of divorce mediation. Look for a divorce mediator who offers a flat fee for all the services they provide, as well as a free divorce consultation the includes a complete marital estate assessment. That way, you and your spouse know up front what is involved. Private divorce mediators generally charge upwards of $250-$350/hr, for as long as it takes to finish the mediation – so the longer it takes you to agree, the more it will cost you.
Also, make sure your divorce mediator assists with the administrative filing of the divorce decree, if you and your spouse are filing an uncontested divorce in PA.
The Best Divorce Mediator Is an Expert Dedicated To Divorce: Often times, you will find divorce mediators who are primarily private divorce litigation attorneys who practice divorce mediation as a secondary specialty.
Although they can also be effective, a divorce litigation attorney is trained with a mindset that may not always be ideal for mediation. They are trained to do battle for their client, to fight and to “win” at all costs- even if that means being locked in a bitter court battle for 2-4 years of your life, spending on average $30,000-$40,000 or more in legal fees, and subjecting your children to the potential emotional anguish which invariably results from such a process.
A divorce mediator, on the other hand, is trained to help you and your spouse find common ground, while encouraging you both to remain amicable, while keeping in mind the bigger picture of your divorce and what’s truly most important to each of you. These are two completely different mindsets, and it can often times be difficult for a divorce litigator to flip a switch, remove their litigation hat and step into the role of divorce mediator.
A Good Divorce Mediator Is a Top-Notch Project Manager: Keeping you and your spouse focused and on track for a healthy resolution of your matter should be the #1 goal of divorce mediators. You should expect your divorce mediator to utilize technology like electronic calendars, mobile e-mail and secure online file and document sharing, uploading, and collaboration tools for maximum efficiency and optimal communication.
A Good Divorce Mediator Is a Natural Trouble-Shooter: What is a good project manager without also being an effective problem solver? For example, when emotions prevent positive forward progress, a savvy divorce mediator will encourage one or both clients to work with a therapist or divorce coach to move past sticking points.
A Good Divorce Mediator Must Be Compassionate: A divorce mediator is not merely a referee who oversees the blind whacking up of all of the marital assets and then everybody goes home.
Rather, the best divorce mediators are very much invested in you. Look for the intangibles. A genuine caring and concern for both you and your family’s longer-term financial and emotional wellness should be obvious on a first impression. Also, someone free of racial or gender bias, and a lover of humanity, in general.
Just trust your gut here. It’s imperative that both of you have some type of chemistry or rapport with the divorce mediator upon that first meeting or phone call.
A Good Divorce Mediator Does Everything To Ensure You Each Emerge Healthy and Whole: That’s why a good mediator would not take your case unless (s)he believes that you and your spouse will be successful. In assessing this, for example, a good divorce mediator should ask whether you both agree that your marriage is over and you are each ready to move on. If either or both of you are not yet at this point, they should refer you to a divorce coach or therapist to help you decide what each of you really want.
Just as important, additional divorce support should be available, such as healthy parenting plans and guidance on how to speak to your children about divorce, a financial planner for higher net worth cases, or even a referral to a realtor who will help you get the best price if you must sell your house, estate planning support for how to update and protect your estate after divorce and provide for your loved ones in the event of your death, and a coach to help you create your new life after divorce.
Why Choose Us?
Attorney Dawn Renken has dedicated her career to helping families find solutions for their needs. In addition to having years of experience practicing as a family law attorney, she is also a Licensed Mediator through ADR Services International Inc. She is able to use her hands-on knowledge of divorce cases and agreements to help couples work together to reach divorce agreements. This includes helping divorcing couples work together to divide property, assets, debt, child custody, and more.
Schedule a consultation with our team to learn more about your options for divorce.
Houston Divorce Mediator
Our team proudly serves the Greater Houston area, including but not limited to Brazos County, Cypress, Fort Bend County, Galveston, Houston Heights, Houston, Humble, Katy, Kingwood, Memorial Houston, Montgomery County, Montrose, Richmond, Rosenberg, Spring, The Woodlands. All marriages are different, making each divorce equally unique with its own set of needs that must be addressed. Contact our law office to explore your options moving forward, and find out how we can help you.
Divorce can be an emotionally and financially taxing process, but mediation can offer a more amicable and cost-effective alternative to courtroom battles. In this blog post, we’ll explore the critical do’s and don’ts of divorce mediation. We’ll also introduce you to experienced divorce mediator and attorney, Dawn Renken, of The Renken Law Firm in Houston, who can help couples navigate this process and make thorough and informed choices when drafting a divorce agreement. Divorce is never easy, but divorce mediation can make the process smoother and more manageable. Unlike traditional divorce proceedings, which often involve lengthy courtroom battles, mediation allows couples to work together with a neutral third party to resolve their differences and create a mutually acceptable divorce agreement. When done right, mediation can save time, money, and emotional distress. However, divorce mediation isn’t a walk in the park. It requires open communication, patience, and a willingness to compromise. To help you navigate this process successfully, here are 10 things you should never say or do during divorce mediation: 1. Refusing to Communicate Effective communication is the cornerstone of any successful mediation. Refusing to talk or listen can hinder progress and lead to a more protracted and contentious divorce. It’s essential to be open and honest about your concerns, needs, and preferences during mediation. Dawn Renken, an experienced divorce mediator, is skilled in facilitating constructive communication between divorcing couples. She can help create an environment where both parties feel heard and understood. 2. Letting Emotions Take Over Divorce is an emotionally charged process, but it’s crucial not to let your emotions dictate your actions during mediation. Outbursts of anger or resentment can escalate conflicts and hinder resolution. Instead, try to remain calm and composed. Dawn Renken specializes in guiding clients through the emotional challenges of divorce, helping them focus on their long-term interests rather than short-term emotions. 3. Failing to Prepare Preparation is key to a successful mediation. Failing to gather and organize your financial documents, legal papers, and other relevant information can lead to delays and misunderstandings. Dawn Renken can help you prepare for mediation by ensuring you have all the necessary documentation and information at your fingertips. 4. Being Inflexible Mediation involves compromise, and being too inflexible can hinder progress. While it’s crucial to protect your interests, it’s also essential to understand that some give and take will be necessary to reach an agreement. Dawn Renken has extensive experience in helping clients find middle ground and make compromises that are fair and reasonable. 5. Bringing Up the Past Dragging up past mistakes, hurts, or grievances during mediation is counterproductive. It can create tension and prevent a positive resolution. Dawn Renken can help keep the focus on the present and the future, guiding couples toward constructive discussions that lead to productive solutions. 6. Playing the Blame Game Blaming your spouse for the divorce or trying to make them feel guilty won’t help during mediation. In fact, it’s more likely to create animosity and impede the process. Dawn Renken can act as a neutral mediator, keeping discussions on track and preventing blame from becoming a roadblock to resolution. 7. Disregarding Your Children’s Well-Being If you have children, their well-being should be a top priority during divorce mediation. Failing to consider their needs, feelings, and interests can lead to contentious custody battles and long-term emotional repercussions. Dawn Renken is well-versed in helping divorcing parents create a custody and visitation plan that prioritizes their children’s needs. 8. Making Unrealistic Demands Mediation is about finding realistic and mutually beneficial solutions. Making extravagant or unrealistic demands can lead to an impasse. Dawn Renken can provide insight into what is legally and practically achievable, ensuring that both parties understand the boundaries and possibilities of their divorce agreement. 9. Hiding Assets Concealing assets during mediation is not only unethical but also illegal. It can result in severe legal consequences and damage your credibility in the eyes of the mediator and the court. Dawn Renken can help ensure full financial transparency during mediation, preventing disputes over hidden assets.
The Renken Law Firm has worked hard to earn a reputation for efficiently practicing diligent and focused legal services. During the course of our representation, you can expect expert legal advice in the areas of divorce, separation planning, custody disputes, child support cases, grandparents rights, prenuptial agreements, attorney general cases and enforcement actions. Prenuptial agreements, commonly referred to as prenups, are contractual agreements made between two individuals prior to their marriage. They establish the framework for how assets, debts, and other financial matters will be handled should the marriage end in divorce or due to the death of one spouse. Prenuptial agreements provide a level of financial security and peace of mind to both parties by outlining their rights and responsibilities. When considering a prenup, it’s essential to work with a knowledgeable Prenup Attorney in Houston, like the experts at The Renken Law Firm, to ensure that your agreement is comprehensive and tailored to your unique needs. The Importance of a Prenuptial Agreement Prenuptial agreements are not only for the wealthy or those anticipating divorce. They can be invaluable tools for protecting individual assets, managing financial expectations, and ensuring a fair resolution should the marriage end. Here’s a breakdown of what is typically included in a prenuptial agreement: 1. Property Division One of the primary purposes of a prenup is to specify how assets and debts will be divided in the event of a divorce. This includes real estate, personal property, bank accounts, and investments. The agreement can outline whether certain assets will remain separate property, and which will be considered marital property, subject to division. By clearly defining these terms, you can protect your financial interests and avoid potential disputes in the future. 2. Spousal Support Spousal support, also known as alimony, can be a contentious issue during divorce proceedings. A prenuptial agreement can specify the amount, duration, and conditions under which spousal support will be paid. This allows both parties to have a clear understanding of their financial responsibilities, reducing the risk of prolonged legal battles. 3. Division of Debts Debts incurred during a marriage can be a significant source of concern if the relationship ends. Your prenup can outline how debts will be divided, whether they are considered marital or separate, and who will be responsible for paying them. 4. Inheritance and Estate Planning A prenuptial agreement can address how inheritance and estate planning matters will be handled. It can specify whether certain assets are to be kept separate and secure the interests of children from previous relationships. 5. Business Interests If you own a business or have a stake in a company, a prenup can help protect your business interests. It can outline how the business will be managed and whether your spouse will have any ownership rights in the event of divorce. 6. Financial Responsibilities Your prenuptial agreement can include provisions detailing each spouse’s financial responsibilities during the marriage. This may cover how household expenses will be shared, savings and investment strategies, and other financial matters that will affect your day-to-day life.
Divorce is an emotionally charged, life-altering event. When a marriage reaches a point where it can no longer be sustained, the process of legally ending it can be intricate and emotionally draining. While Texas law provides for various divorce options, understanding the different types of divorce is crucial for making informed decisions. In this article, we will explore the various divorce options available in Texas, from uncontested to contested, mediation, and more. Additionally, we will highlight the invaluable role of an experienced divorce attorney like Dawn Renken from the Renken Law Firm in Houston, emphasizing how they can help make the process smoother and ensure you don’t overlook important details. 1. Uncontested Divorce An uncontested divorce is often the most straightforward option for couples who have reached an agreement on all significant aspects of their separation, such as child custody, property division, and alimony. This type of divorce is generally less time-consuming and costly than other alternatives, as it minimizes the need for court appearances and lengthy legal battles. An experienced divorce attorney like Dawn Renken can guide you through the process, ensuring all legal requirements are met. Their role is to make sure that the agreement is comprehensive and that no crucial details are overlooked, thus preventing future disputes or complications. 2. Contested Divorce Contrary to uncontested divorce, a contested divorce occurs when spouses cannot come to an agreement on one or more critical issues. These disputes often lead to court proceedings and can be lengthy and emotionally taxing. In a contested divorce, a skilled attorney becomes crucial in protecting your rights, ensuring a fair outcome, and representing your interests in court. Dawn Renken’s experience in contested divorces allows her to navigate the intricacies of Texas divorce law effectively. Her insight into the legal system can prove invaluable in resolving complex disputes and advocating for your rights. 3. Collaborative Divorce Collaborative divorce is an alternative to traditional courtroom battles. In this process, both parties work together with their attorneys to reach a mutually beneficial settlement. This approach can save time and money while preserving relationships and reducing emotional stress, especially when children are involved. An experienced attorney like Dawn Renken can help you through this process by providing legal advice and ensuring that all legal requirements are met. Their guidance can lead to a more amicable resolution, which is especially important when co-parenting in the future. 4. Mediated Divorce Mediation is another non-adversarial option for couples who wish to avoid the courtroom. In a mediated divorce, a neutral third party, often a certified mediator, helps couples negotiate and reach an agreement. This approach encourages open communication and collaboration while addressing concerns and needs of both parties. Having a divorce attorney like Dawn Renken on your side during mediation can be advantageous. Her legal expertise ensures that your rights are protected and that any agreements made align with Texas divorce laws. Additionally, her presence can provide guidance and reassurance during a potentially challenging process. 5. Default Divorce In some cases, one spouse may not participate in the divorce process or may be unreachable. In such instances, Texas law allows for a default divorce. This process typically moves forward with minimal involvement from the absent spouse, making it necessary to ensure all legal steps are correctly followed. An experienced attorney like Dawn Renken can help you navigate a default divorce to ensure that all legal requirements are met, minimizing the risk of complications down the road. Her guidance can expedite the process and provide you with the resolution you seek, even in the absence of cooperation from your spouse. 6. No-Fault Divorce Texas allows for “no-fault” divorces, which means that neither party has to prove wrongdoing or assign blame for the marriage’s dissolution. Instead, one or both parties can simply state that the marriage has become insupportable due to discord or conflict of personalities. While a no-fault divorce may seem straightforward, an experienced attorney can help ensure that this process is executed correctly and that the necessary legal documents are filed. Dawn Renken’s expertise can prevent any issues that might arise from improperly handling the paperwork. 7. Fault Divorce Although Texas recognizes no-fault divorces, some situations may warrant pursuing a fault divorce. Grounds for fault divorce in Texas can include adultery, cruelty, abandonment, or a felony conviction. This type of divorce typically requires the gathering of evidence to support the allegations of fault. Dawn Renken’s experience as a divorce attorney can be invaluable in building a strong case for a fault divorce. Her knowledge of the legal requirements and procedures ensures that your claims are well-substantiated and your interests are protected. 8. Annulment An annulment is different from a divorce, as it legally declares a marriage void or null from the beginning. Grounds for annulment in Texas include bigamy, impotence, fraud, or underage marriage. An annulment can be a complex process, and having an experienced attorney is crucial to present a convincing case before the court. Dawn Renken’s experience and legal acumen can be instrumental in successfully pursuing an annulment in Texas. Her expertise in the intricacies of the legal system can guide you through the process and ensure your interests are protected.
What Is Divorce Mediation? For couples that have come to the decision together to divorce, mediation provides an alternative method than traditional courtroom divorces. Mediation involves a neutral third party: the mediator. The mediator works to help both spouses work through divorce issues and communicate while trying to make decisions that impact their futures. Divorce mediation has become increasingly more popular because it is private, affordable, and allows both parties to have more control over the final outcome of their divorce agreement. Divorce mediation is a great option for divorcing couples where both parties are willing to put their emotions aside and work together to amicably end the marriage. Family law attorney, Dawn Renken is a licensed mediator who can provide helpful legal advice throughout your divorce case. This includes resolving disputes, creating a child custody schedule, settling on child support payments, property divisions, and much more. Why Choose to Mediate Your Divorce? Although judges often order divorcing couples to participate in mediation before going to trial, you have the option of mediating on your own—either before you file for divorce or at any time after. Mediating your divorce has a lot of advantages over litigating it (fighting it out in court). ost. Mediation is much less expensive than a trial. Settling the case. Most mediations end in settlement of all of the issues in the divorce. Confidentiality. Mediation is confidential, with no public record of what goes on in your sessions. Freedom. Mediation allows you to arrive at a resolution based on your own ideas of what is fair in your situation, rather than having a solution imposed upon you based on rigid and impersonal legal principles. Advice still available. You can go to mediation and still choose to have a lawyer give you legal advice. Control. You and your spouse—not the court—control the process. Communication. The mediation process encourages communication between you and your spouse, helping you avoid future conflicts. Successful mediation makes the rest of your divorce easier: Because you’ve done all the hard work of hammering out the details in the mediation, you can file an “uncontested” divorce. Uncontested divorces are usually less expensive and faster than litigated divorces (divorces where the couple battles in court). With an uncontested divorce, you’ll save money on attorneys’ fees and the costs of going to trial. Also, many courts fast-track uncontested cases because everything has been worked out in advance, meaning that a judge will be able to finalize your divorce faster than if you’d gone to trial. There are many reasons that make divorce mediation attractive to couples but it is not for everyone. In order to have a successfully mediated divorce, both parties must be willing to work together and compromise in a civil exchange to come to an agreement. Reaching an amicable divorce can be difficult in relationships where spouses do not share similar goals or ideas about property division, child custody, or other important aspects of their divorce. Additionally, in situations where emotions are high and discussions are strained, mediation may not be the most efficient manner to reach a divorce agreement. There are other options such as collaborative divorce, arbitration, and of course litigation for couples that mediation does not work for. Contact us today to get the answers you are looking for about divorce in Houston, TX and surrounding areas. Experienced Family Law Attorney in Houston, TX Our team proudly serves the Greater Houston area. All marriages are different, making each divorce equally unique with its own set of needs that must be addressed. Our team is dedicated to helping you and your family move forward without legal matters complicating your life. Contact our law office to explore your options for traditional marriage divorce and common law divorce, and find out how we can help you resolve any legal problems you are currently facing.