Switch to ADA Accessible Theme
Close Menu
Tampa Divorce Lawyer
Schedule A Consultation Today! 813-490-5211 Hurricane Damage

Is Mediation Mandatory in a Florida Divorce?


Florida has no specific rule that requires spouses to mediate their divorces. However, certain counties do have rules that require mediation prior to litigating a divorce. Hillsborough County, where Tampa, FL is found, does have such a requirement. Couples in Tampa, FL will have to at least try to resolve their issues in mediation before taking their case to trial. In this article, the Tampa, FL family attorneys at Westchase Law, P.A. will discuss divorce mediation and how it works in a Florida divorce.

What is divorce mediation in Florida? 

Mediation is a process that can resolve certain issues such as asset distribution, alimony or spousal support, child custody and timesharing, and child support. With the help of a third-party mediator, the couple can attempt to resolve their disputes and reach a consensus. The mediator acts as a negotiator who helps the couple reach an accord. The mediator will assist each spouse in communicating and negotiating certain terms of their divorce. While the mediator does not have legal decision-making authority like a judge, they can help the parties reach a compromise that becomes the foundation of their divorce settlement. The process is often less adversarial than traditional courtroom litigation.

Do you need your own attorney for a divorce mediation? 

You do not. However, having your own attorney can be an invaluable resource during mediation to ensure that your rights are protected and your interests are secured. A divorce mediation attorney can help with drafting agreements in the mediation process. You may also want to consult with your lawyer before and during the mediation. An attorney can help prepare you for the mediation session, advise you on what to expect, and provide you with strategies that help ensure your interests. You can even have your attorney join you for the mediation session.

Does mediation always work? 

No. For many couples, mediation is highly effective at negotiating all or some of the terms of their divorce and presenting the court with a divorce decree. However, negotiations can break down, couples won’t see eye-to-eye, and issues remain unresolved. In these cases, some aspects of the divorce may be agreed upon while others remain contentious. In those cases, the areas where the couple could not agree would proceed to litigation. The matter would be decided by the court.

Will mediation work for my divorce case? 

Mediation works for those who come prepared to compromise on key issues related to their divorce. In many cases, mediation works because the couple wants to avoid the emotional and financial costs of litigation. Mediation gives you and your spouse the power to determine all issues related to your divorce. When a judge decides, the power is out of your hands.

Talk to a Tampa, FL Divorce Mediation Attorney Today 

Westchase Law, P.A. represents the interests of Tampa, FL couples who are seeking a divorce. Call our office today to schedule an appointment and we can begin going over your options immediately.

Facebook Twitter LinkedIn