How to Successfully Negotiate Custody During Mediation

Divorce can be tough on children, just as it is on the divorcing parents. How can you successfully negotiate custody during mediation?

Put the children first

Most courts decide custody issues with the best interests of the child in mind. That’s a good tip for mediation, too. Ideally, both parents should put their children first. In practice, one parent may be inflexible or stubborn. Parenting issues tend to be the most emotionally charged part of any divorce. Remember that your mediator is there to defuse the situation and guide you through the process of coming to an agreement.

Know the difference between physical and legal custody

There are two types of custody: physical custody, in which you are physically caring for and living with your child, and legal custody, which is the right to make decisions about their education, healthcare, religion and more. Remember, custody isn’t an all-or-nothing proposition. You can make whichever arrangements work best for everyone involved.

Know what you want

Before mediation, consider what you really want out of custody. For example, how will you split holidays and vacations? Do you want the children to live with you the majority of the time, or can you evenly split custody with your ex? Are there any health or safety concerns you want to address in mediation? How will you two communicate? Having a basic plan ensures that you’re less likely to be blindsided during the session.

Stay calm

Above all, try to remain calm during the session. It can be very difficult to discuss custody issues, especially if your divorce is less than amicable. Keep your emotions in check and focus on what’s best for your children.

When you need a skilled custody mediator in Long Island, talk Solutions Divorce Mediation today.

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