How to Divorce, from equalityinmarriage.org
Just as you would prepare for any other life altering change, you will want to educate yourself on the process of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR). Here is a list of what you should keep in mind, take action on, and follow through with, when using ADR.
Essential Things To Do:
Complete an Internet search on the different types of ADR by searching under keywords "Divorce Mediation", "Divorce Arbitration", and "Collaborative Law". You will probably come across individual professionals' websites, as well as larger organizations. Many of the sites you find will have a resources area where you will find additional links and organizations.
Ask friends and family if they have had any experience with ADR. If so, obtain names and numbers, and when possible website addresses
.Define and write down the issues you want or expect to be mediated/ arbitrated. Keep them in a journal or file. Check them off as they are resolved.
Know the value of anything considered mutual property. If you don't know the value of your property there are property/estate evaluators. See your financial advisor for a referral or use the internet to locate a professional near you.
Think about the bare minimum you would accept in a settlement and the maximum you can realistically expect.
Think about, and note areas of compromise.
Tell the mediator your wants and needs, not why the marriage went wrong.
Consider what your spouse is likely to ask for and why. Do the same for your self. Write them down.
If you have children, think about their needs today and in the future such as child support, health insurance, major expenses such as day care, private school, therapy or orthodontia that should be part of the agreement.
Ask questions at any point. It's your divorce and you are your best advocate.