This Consumer Reports article shares a lot of helpful information about how families can solve financial problems. The ideas certainly can be helpful for people who are separated and divorced who are trying to figure out how to handle debts, the sale of a house, tuition, and retirement accounts.
Tobie Stranger recommends that people meet in a neutral place and hire a neutral person. Mediators are particularly well trained neutrals who can effectively guide conversations. During mediation, people share information (e.g. recent credit card and retirement account statements). The mediator helps people think about realistic ways to handle each issue. Mediators make sure that people fully discuss options and are well informed before making decisions.
The article emphasizes the need to be respectful during these difficult conversations. Mediators make sure that each person has ample times to share his/her ideas. Mediators also monitor the conversation, so that one person does not dominate the discussion.
Solving money disputes is crucial. Mediation helps people make informed financial decisions; then people can move on with less disruption to family relationships