Online Divorce Mediation

Online Divorce Mediation with MA Attorney on Zoom


In online divorce mediation, we interact over live video just as we would interact if we were sitting in the same physical room for divorce mediation. I guide discussion of the parenting, property, and support issues that need to be addressed in divorce, I make sure both spouses have a chance to talk and be heard, and we share documents in real time.


My practice is devoted 100% to divorce mediation, and over 95% of my cases are currently online divorce mediation on Zoom. I have successfully mediated over 1600 cases in the last 20 years, with almost 400 of those done virtually on Zoom.


I have done close toI can mediate your Massachusetts divorce remotely, or virtually, via live video chat or telephone. You can complete your divorce agreement efficiently and cost effectively with me and file it with the court. You and your spouse do not need to have social contact with me or go to public offices during the coronavirus pandemic.


What are the advantages of online divorce mediation?


Online divorce mediation with an attorney mediator has all the benefits that in-person mediation has over litigation. I first list the advantages of divorce mediation more generally:


  • Divorce mediation is much faster that litigation (fighting in court). With divorce mediation, a judge will be signing the divorce decree as fast as 4 months (most of this time is waiting for a court hearing). For litigated divorces, 18-24 months is more common, and they can drag on longer than that.


  • Divorce mediation is much cheaper than litigation. Expect to pay $2000-$4000 for mediation, a cost that is shared by both spouses. Litigated divorces start with a $5000 retainer (deposit) for each spouse, and this retainer is quickly used up. Even a relatively simple divorce with lawyers will be between $5000 and $10,000 each. If you have high assets or a complicated situation, expect it to go above $10,000 each.


  • Divorce mediation does not make your relationship worse, as fighting in court will. In mediation, you work together to close the door on the marriage gently.


  • Divorce mediation gives you more control over the details and specifics of the outcome. Judges don’t have the time to understand your specific circumstances and create a court order to fit your needs. In mediation, in contrast, you can tailor the agreement in ways that matter to you.


In addition to the advantages that mediation has over litigation, online divorce mediation has advantages over in-person divorce mediation.


  • People are busy with their jobs and their family responsibilities. An in-person meeting with a professional divorce mediator requires reliable transportation, navigating to a new place, finding and paying for parking, and finding the office itself. This requires taking more time off from work and securing childcare if you have children. With online divorce mediation, you can participate from your home or work without transportation or travel time.


  • Geographic distance disappears. It does not matter if you or your spouse is travelling for work, is deployed with the military, is visiting distant family, or has moved to entirely new part of the world. You can do divorce mediation—with all its benefits—no matter where the two of you are.


  • Emotions can be better managed. Divorce is a painful time. Hurt and anger of divorce can flare up more during face-to-face meetings than in when couples are just seeing each other online. If conflict between a couple is very high, they often do not want to be sitting in the same room. Online divorce mediation enables people to talk and address the practicalities of divorce—who is keeping which car, can one of us afford to buy the other out of the house, etc.—with less triggering of the raw emotion of the relationship.


  • Power imbalances can be better managed. If your spouse is a dominating presence, it can be difficult to speak up in their physical presence, where you are more likely to feel intimidated or overwhelmed. In the online setting, it is less likely that a dominant person can overwhelm their spouse.


  • Overall flexibility. Depending on your schedules and your relationship, you can sit next to each other in a room with one computer, or you can each be on your own computer in the same house or a thousand miles away from each other. You can easily take bathroom or snack breaks; you have access to your files or computer for looking up required information and sharing it on-screen during the session; you can get up to sign for a package at the door or turn the oven off, etc.


Is virtual divorce mediation or online divorce mediation the same as an “internet divorce”?


No! Online divorce mediation is a live meeting with a divorce professional, preferably a divorce mediation lawyer who specializes solely in mediation. An “internet divorce” is typically an inexpensive form that you fill out online and then download documents to print.


While it is possible that you can generate court forms from a website that will be approved by a judge, it is unlikely. Massachusetts family courts regularly reject DIY filings, and the courts do not tell you what is wrong with them. After they reject your documents, they tell you, “we cannot give you legal advice” and they suggest that you see a divorce lawyer or mediator.


Perhaps more importantly, you will not understand what you are doing with internet divorce forms unless you already know Massachusetts family law and divorce finances. For some couples—no children, no assets, similar incomes, short marriage, and plenty of patience for the court rejecting your papers—there is very little at stake. But for couples with retirement accounts, children, a home, a longer marriage, or big differences in income, you could make mistakes with internet divorce forms that you will regret for many years.


What technology do I need for the virtual divorce mediation?



Zoom is a free applications that you can use on a computer, tablet, or a smartphone. Even if you have not used this application before, it is easy enough to use that you can download it and be video chatting with me in 5 minutes. They allow us to see each other, speak to each other, and look at documents together in real time.


It is possible to participate in divorce mediation meetings on a smartphone, but it is much better to use a computer or tablet so there is more space on the screen to see a) the other people’s faces, and b) documents at the same time.


I  generate all court forms and the divorce agreement and email or postal mail them to you for signatures; you drop them off at the courthouse or postal mail them to court. You wait 1-4 months for a brief, 10-minute hearing where the judge signs the papers.

Does it matter where my online divorce mediator is?


You want an online divorce mediator who is a Massachusetts lawyer. Because divorce laws and procedures are specific to states, a mediator who is not an expert in MA family law will not be able to lead you through the issues that need to be addressed for a MA divorce. In general, you want an attorney mediator (a lawyer), rather than just a mediator. Massachusetts has no legal standard or licensing for calling yourself a “divorce mediator.” In contrast, a Massachusetts lawyer has graduated from law school and passed the Massachusetts state bar exam.


It does not matter where your MA divorce mediator’s office is.  Divorce in MA is governed by Massachusetts General Law Chapter 208, which is state-wide. The same forms and procedures are used at all MA  family courts state-wide, regardless of the county.


I have successfully mediated divorces for couples in every MA county except Nantucket and Dukes (Martha’s Vineyard). Because Western Massachusetts lawyer and mediation prices are generally lower than other parts of the state, you can get a Western Massachusetts price for your divorce mediation even if you live in one of the more expensive parts of the state.


Call me now or email me to discuss how we can move your divorce mediation forward, regardless of where you live .