California Divorce Mediation process

Marriage mediator Scott Levin provides a detailed overview of the California divorce mediation process and the services we offer to clients throughout their mediation for divorce.   

Welcome to San Diego Divorce Mediation & Family Law, the leading divorce law firm specializing in family law mediation in California.  Our firm prioritizes no-court divorce settlements and resolution. For those navigating the complexities of divorce, our mediation lawyers offer a path to amicable divorce services.

Licensed California attorney Scott Levin is a mediation specialist providing a path towards a less contentious collaborative divorce process.  To help you navigate an uncontested divorce, meaning a divorce without needing to go to court at any time, we will help explain what is divorce mediation and explore the benefits of divorce mediation, shed light on the mediation process, and highlight how it can effectively reduce post-divorce conflict.

marriage mediation Divorce Process

Divorce mediation process is explained here courtesy of California marriage mediator Scott Levin as the marriage mediator, entails an organized process that has been developed by Scott over the decades he has served in the role of a neutral family lawyer. The process is designed with the goal of amicably resolving disputes between divorcing parties. 

Our divorce mediation process at San Diego Divorce Mediation & Family Law includes a free consultation, full disclosure of financial assets and debts, settlement negotiation sessions, and the full scope of legal work required for the court’s acceptance including the drafting of a Marital Settlement Agreement. 

The timeline for the mediation process can vary but generally follows a sequence of steps from initial consultation to finalizing the divorce. It is common for our clients to actively work with Scott Levin for less than two months at which time a settlement has been reached and all the agreements and court forms have been submitted by our firm. 

Understanding the California mediation process can alleviate anxieties and uncertainties. While each mediation may vary, here is a general step-by-step guide:

  1. Initial Free Consultation With California Divorce Mediator:

    Couples meet with mediator Scott Levin to discuss their goals, concerns, and expectations. The consultation is with both spouses and our mediation attorney and that is essential. Starting the exploration of mediation together is important because it establishes a team approach as well as ensuring that neither spouse feels uncertain about the mediator’s impartiality. That impartiality can be questioned when only one spouse speaks with the mediator. 

    1. Purpose of initial consultation: To understand the mediation process, discuss goals, and determine if mediation is suitable.
    2. Topics discussed during the initial consultation: Meeting is with Scott Levin who will discuss our unique mediation process, the flat-fee mediation fees, answers questions and helps set a clear understanding of the benefits of a successful mediation and what woudl be expected from the couple if they choose our services.
    3. Outcome of the initial consultation: Agreement to proceed with mediation and scheduling of future sessions.
  1. Complete California Financial Disclosures for Divorce:

    Mediation attorney Scott Levin provides the disclosure forms and helps the spouses fill them out fully and completely. The key is a full and open disclosure of property and debt by both sides as nothing less is acceptable. 

    1. Purpose: To ensure both parties have a clear understanding of each other’s financial situation.
    2. Activities: Completing and exchanging financial disclosure forms (Form FL-142 and Form FL-150).
    3. Gathering documents such as tax returns, bank statements, and property valuations.
    4. Timing: Disclosures should be completed early in the mediation process, typically within 60 days of starting mediation.
    5. Outcome: Both parties have a comprehensive view of the financial landscape, which is crucial for fair negotiations.
  2. Mediation Sessions with California Mediator Scott Levin: 

    1. Identification of issues: Our California mediator helps identify the key issues to be resolved, such as child custody, division of assets, and financial support.
    2. Negotiation and problem-solving: Through guided discussions, the mediator helps couples explore various options and find mutually agreeable solutions.
    3. Negotiation Mediations: virtual mediations on zoom or mediations at our offices will include  both spouses and California divorce attorney mediator Scott Levin. These sessions are the key to the process as you will discuss and negotiate various aspects of the divorce.
    4. The mediator facilitates discussions, helps identify issues, and suggests possible solutions.
    5. Timing: Sessions should occur once a week or every other week. Typically couples need 5 or fewer meetings and so it is common for our clients to reach settlements within 6 or 8 weeks. 
    6. Outcome: Reaching a mutually acceptable agreement on all issues.
  3. Drafting the Marital Settlement Agreement:

    Once agreements are reached on the full scope of California divorce issues, our mediator will prepare a comprehensive written agreement that reflects the couple’s marriage settlement agreement.  

    1. Purpose: To formalize the agreements reached during mediation.
    2. Activities: The mediator drafts a Marital Settlement Agreement (MSA) based on the negotiated terms.
    3. Both parties review the draft, possibly with their attorneys, and make any necessary revisions.
    4. Timing: Drafting and reviewing the agreement can take a few weeks.
    5. Outcome: A finalized MSA that outlines the terms of the divorce.
  4. Court Approval of Mediated Settlement Agreement for California Divorce:

    Our mediation attorney Scott Levin performs all the court filings and drafting of all court forms for our clients. In doing so, our firm will navigate the legal process for you so that the settlement agreed upon is approved by the Court without either spouse ever going to court. Divorce without court is a beautiful thing.

    1. Purpose: To obtain legal approval of the settlement agreement and finalize the divorce.
    2. Activities: Filing the MSA and other required forms with the court (e.g., Form FL-170, FL-190 and Judgment Form FL-180).
    3. Never attend a court hearing!
    4. Timing: The court process can take several weeks to months, depending on the court’s schedule.
    5. Outcome of Mediated Divorce is Judgment:
      A court-approved divorce decree that legally ends the marriage.
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California Divorce Expertise - Focused Solely on Mediation

At San Diego Divorce Mediation & Family Law, we are exclusively devoted to mediation. Our team, led by Scott Levin, a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA), and a law graduate from the University of Virginia School of Law, brings over 20 years of family law experience. Scott is also an adjunct professor of California Community Property Law at Western Sierra Law School in San Diego, CA and this role only adds to his depth of legal knowledge and expertise. 

We pride ourselves on our proficiency in negotiating fair settlements, always prioritizing our clients’ goals and needs while minimizing emotional and financial stress.


Comprehensive Divorce Mediation Services

We specialize in mediating a wide range of family law matters, including divorce, same-sex divorce, child custody, property division, spousal support, child support, premarital agreements, marital agreements, and domestic partnerships. Our approach ensures that each case is handled with the utmost care and professionalism, tailored to the unique needs of our clients.

Scott Levin, the leading mediator at San Diego Divorce Mediation & Family Law, brings a unique blend of expertise and compassion to the table. With years of experience in the field, Scott has a deep understanding of the legal, financial, and emotional intricacies involved in divorce proceedings. His approach is rooted in fairness and neutrality, ensuring that both parties feel heard and respected throughout the process. Scott’s expertise lies in facilitating open communication, guiding couples to find common ground, and helping them work through complex issues such as asset division, child custody, and spousal support.


California Divorce Mediation Advantages

Navigating through the complexities of divorce can be an expensive, lengthy and emotionally taxing process for many individuals. To avoid these pitfulls, finding a reliable and effective way to resolve marital disputes is crucial. This is where divorce mediation services come into play, offering a more amicable and less adversarial alternative to traditional courtroom battles. In San Diego, one name stands out in this field: San Diego Divorce Mediation & Family Law, led by the top-rated mediator, Scott Levin.

San Diego Divorce Mediation & Family Law has carved a niche for itself as the elite provider of divorce mediation services through California including our home base in and around the San Diego area including in particular North County Coastal and central San Diego communities such as Rancho Bernardo and Poway.  

The firm specializes in helping couples achieve mutually beneficial agreements with the utmost professionalism and empathy. Unlike the often contentious and public nature of court divorces, mediation offers a private, more controlled, and less costly approach. This method not only benefits the couples involved but also significantly reduces the emotional strain on any children involved.

Why Clients Choose San Diego Divorce Mediation

What sets San Diego Divorce Mediation & Family Law apart is their commitment to personalized service. Understanding that every couple’s situation is unique, they offer tailored solutions that address the specific needs and concerns of each client. This client-centric approach has earned them a reputation for excellence in the San Diego community.

Moreover, the firm is known for its collaborative approach. Scott Levin works closely with other professionals, such as financial planners and therapists, to ensure a comprehensive support system for clients. This multidisciplinary approach helps in addressing all aspects of the divorce, from the legal to the emotional, ensuring a holistic resolution.

For those considering divorce in California, San Diego Divorce Mediation & Family Law offers a beacon of hope. With Scott Levin at the helm, clients can expect a process that is not only more efficient and less costly than traditional litigation but also one that promotes a positive foundation for post-divorce life. By choosing mediation, individuals can take a significant step towards a respectful and amicable resolution, setting the stage for a healthier future for all parties involved.


Contact Information

San Diego Divorce Mediation & Family Law is located at 9820 Willow Creek Rd Ste 410, San Diego, CA 92131. We serve clients throughout California. With our offices centrally located in San Diego, we have served thousands of clients through marriage mediation in La Jolla, North County San Diego, Irvine, Orange County, and the Bay Area.

Contact us to schedule initial consultation or to learn more about our services, please call us at (858) 255-1321 or email us at