Issues to Decide During a Mediation


When you're going through a divorce - whether you do so using mediation, or the "traditional" way - there are a number of issues you and your spouse need to discuss and resolve.  Here's a list of the main issues divorcing couples need to consider.  (Of course, not every issue may apply to you).



Parenting Decisions


"Legal" Custody and "Physical" Custody Decisions


  • sole custody and decision making by one parent
  • joint decision making, but the children reside primarily with one parent 
  • shared physical custody and joint decision making
  • split physical custody and joint decision making
  • how to decide on the "major" issues concerning the children - their health,    education, religion, major activities and general welfare
  •  how to decide on the "day-to- day" matters concerning the children



Schedule of Time with the Children


  • weekdays and weekends
  • holidays
  • school vacations
  • summer vacations
  • birthdays - yours and theirs
  • other special occasions - Mother’s Day, Father’s Day
  • notice of changes to the schedule
  • grandparent visitation
  • telephone calls
  • Mechanism for problem resolution regarding children
  • changeover times and places
  • transportation responsibility


Geographic Restrictions


  • foreign travel
  • relocating with children




  • addresses and phone numbers
  • illnesses and accidents
  • children’s whereabouts 


Addressing Future Issues


  • decision-making and conflict resolution
  • any changes in parenting arrangements                         
  • periodic review/changes in schedules



Your Assets            


Your Home  


  • who will live there during the divorce
  • how will pay the household expenses during the divorce
  • what's your house worth
  • what will you do with the house
  • will the house be sold? If so, when? 
  • will one party have the option to buy out the other
  • how will you determine the selling price
  • how to pay the household expenses until the sale    
  • how will you divide the sale proceeds
  • how to deal with capital gains tax, if any


Your Retirement Funds


  • identifying retirement assets
  • valuing retirement assets
  • dividing retirement assets
  • will you need a special court order (a "QDRO") to divide up a retirement plan? 



Business Interests


  • identifying and valuing business interests
  • division of value
  • any professional licenses?


Division of All Other Property


  • other real estate  
  • bank accounts
  • investment portfolios
  •  cars
  •  jewelry
  •  collections - art, coins, etc.
  •  furniture and furnishings
  •  sky miles, credit card points
  •  inheritances?
  •  all other property


Your Liabilities


  • identifying all debts, and deciding how they will be paid/divided    
  • credit card bills
  • loans
  •  home equity loans



Support for The Children



Child Support


  •  review and application of the CT Child Support Guidelines                 
  •  amount of child support
  •  possible cost of living adjustments
  •  future modification


Nursery School/Day Care/Private School Issues



College and Graduate School Tuition and Expenses

  • whether one or both parties will save for college as the kids grow
  • how to pay for college when the children attend 
  • any "cap" on the amount to be paid


Medical Insurance and Expenses


  • who will provide medical insurance 
  • how to pay for uncovered or unreimbursed expenses
  • payment of extraordinary and elective procedures
  • orthodontia
  • dental expenses


Other Expenses for the Children


  • summer camp
  • extracurricular/extraordinary activities



Life Insurance


  • who will carry it
  • what are you insuring
  • in what amount
  • beneficiaries
  • duration




  • file joint or separate tax returns
  • exemptions for children
  • division of refunds, or payments due
  • liability for deficiencies, penalties
  • cost of audit


Other Issues


  • religious divorce issues
  • resolution of future disputes
  • religion of children
  • health insurance and uncovered medical costs for the parties




  • who will receive it
  • how much
  • how long
  • modification of the amount and/or duration of the alimony payments 
  • will there be a cost of living adjustment


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Phone (203) 359-1999
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