Skip to Content

Divorcing? To Fight or Not to Fight?


When considering divorce couples are usually familiar with going to court and fighting. More and more couples are learning there are more peaceful options. People ask me more about the difference between “litigation” and “mediation” during consultations.

Sometimes after answering their questions, I ask, “Do you want to “fight” or “not to fight” your spouse?” Believe it or not, there are those spouses who only want to fight. They only see “red” and nothing is going to change their mind. But for those open to a non-adversarial option there is a more positive and peaceful solution–it’s mediation.

Both paths, litigation and mediation, lead to a divorce, but the intention and the process are very different.


Under the traditional system, imported from England originally, couples went to court to obtain a divorce.

Each spouse hires his or her own "advocate," and they engage in what is normally an adversarial process. The steps can include negotiation between the attorneys. If or when this is not working, there is always the threat of "going to court," where a judge will make decisions about all the issues, including custody and visitation, child support, spousal support, and the division of property.

The court process is particularly daunting. It includes serving a summons and complaint, an answer, and exchanging financial information and documents. This exchange is called "discovery," and it is, in fact, a way to find out the facts about the parties' finances. It can include subpoenas served on banks, businesses, and third parties. It may also include applications made to the court for various types of relief, such as temporary child and spousal support, interim custody, and counsel fees.

Once you get locked into the system, it is extremely hard to find your way out. It is expensive, time-consuming, and emotionally draining. Ultimately, it may be the only vehicle for warring couples of a certain ilk. In some cases I call this the vehicle path to “punish.”

This path is often attractive to spouses who want revenge, enjoy conflict, and seek to maintain control over the other spouse.


Mediation is positive, productive, and peaceful! Why fight when you can discuss, negotiate, and participate in a thoughtful and peaceful divorce process? Mediation offers a more humane, less painful way to approach divorce. With mediation there are no losers; everyone is a winner.

This path to divorce involves working with an unbiased mediator, usually a lawyer, whose function it is to assist a couple in a peaceful process, to make decisions together at and arrive at an agreement that is fair to both.

For people who have never experienced it, mediation is surprisingly and stunningly effective. It is quick, inexpensive, and not adversarial.

Mediation is a three-part process, consisting of the negotiations, the preparation of an agreement, and preparation and submission of the divorce documents to a judge for signature.

Mediation is a negotiated process between divorcing spouses on the important issues: finances, support, property, and children.

The focus of mediation is for you to control your own divorce. Spouses have the opportunity to discuss their personal needs and priorities and to arrive together at an agreement that is fair to both of them.

Another appealing aspect of the mediation process is time and cost. Most divorce mediation cases can be resolved in months instead of years, and can cost thousands instead of tens of thousands of dollars. This process can take months instead of years.

Here is what is important to most spouses in any divorce process:

1. to be heard

2. to be informed;

3. to be understood;

4. emotionally supported;

5. have things done in a timely manner;

6. get a fair settlement;

7. avoid court;

8. not have to spend their life savings on lawyers

In the last decade, mediation has become the popular choice of many divorcing couples. In fact, during the pandemic while the courts have been closed, couples have embraced mediation and this method has grown in popularity.

If you trust me with your divorce, I will support you and do the above!

Working with me, your mediation process will be postitive, productive, and peaceful!

Why don’t you give mediation a try?

I am offering Free 1 hour consultations. Why not join me to learn more…

During the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic all our FREE 1 HOUR CONSULTATIONS are conveniently conducted virtually to reduce risk.

I look forward to sharing all the impressive benefits of mediation with you.

Stay healthy and safe!

Warm regards,


Call New York Divorce Lawyer Lois Brenner to learn more about divorce mediation now to book your Free 1 hour consultation. Call 212.734.1551.

We still have some appointments available for this week.