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As mediation takes an in-creasingly prominent role in the family law arena, elements of the process have become more familiar culturally. Among these are: the opportunity to craft individualized solutions; autonomy in decision-making; voluntary participation; and low costs. Parties choose to mediate, as an alternative means to crafting a divorce settlement, for a broad range of reasons, including to maintain some measure of goodwill, peace and cooperation—particularly when the divorcing couple has children. In fact, attempting to mediate a divorce conflict, rather than entering a court process, is itself indicative of the parties' mutual hope to create a foundation for communicating and cooperating for the benefit of their children. Such couples realize that they are inextricably bound by their parenting role. And, an important by-product of this effort to cooperate: some insulation of the children from the stress and conflict inherent in divorce.

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