It may have been your best attempt at working things out together with your spouse before having to go to court, but sometimes divorce mediation simply doesn’t work. This can even happen when both parties believe that they are on the same page. One spouse might determine that he or she would prefer to contest various aspects of the divorce instead and this can hold both parties back from reaching an agreement outside of court.

If you have already attempted divorce mediation but have been unsuccessful, it’s time to talk to an Arizona family lawyer about your options. Finding the right family law attorney is an important first step when divorce mediation hasn’t worked. You shouldn’t spend any time worrying about the fact that divorce mediation was unsuccessful.  In fact, having it fail and seeing how the attempt played out can actually assist you going forward because it may provide you insight on what issues are most important to you and your spouse and where you are willing to compromise and where you are not.  If you know that you and your partner intend to dissolve the marriage but you are not sure what your next steps are, use this opportunity to get some of your key questions answered by an experienced attorney.

Consulting with your attorney inform tell you about some of the challenges you might face when filing for divorce as well as a general timeline and an overview of the process that you might expect when filing in court. It’s important to remember that just because you and your spouse might not agree on every issue does not have to mean that you will end up in long-term litigation. Sometimes you and your spouse may be able to address some of the major issues by coming to agreement on your own, simply using the court to agree on those contested issues.

Most Commonly Contested Issues

Some of the most common issues that cause disputes between divorcing parties have to do with child custody, child support, spousal support, and division of property. When parties cannot come to an agreement on their own, the court uses a variety of factors to determine the next steps and how these should be handled.

Having an experienced divorce attorney at your side makes this difficult process much easier because you know you have someone advocating for your rights. Since the outcome of your divorce can significantly impact what your life looks like, it is critical to consult with your attorney and express your primary concerns from the outset.

If you know what issues are most likely to be contested as a result of a failed divorce mediation, share those with your attorney as well as any evidence that could help support your arguments. Do not minimize the importance of selecting the right lawyer to help you. This should be about a mix of experience as well as your own confidence in the attorney. You have to feel comfortable in working with this individual with issues that are highly personal and often difficult.

 Make sure you hire an Arizona divorce attorney who is sensitive to your concerns and works hard to represent your best interests in the contested issues associated with the end of your marriage.


This blog should be used for informational purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice. If you need legal advice regarding What to Do When Divorce Mediation Doesn’t Work, or any other family law issue, please feel free to contact Sheri D. Shepard at 480.461.5300, log on to, or contact an attorney in your area. Udall Shumway PLC is located in Mesa, Arizona and is a full service law firm. We assist Individuals, families, businesses, schools and municipalities in Mesa and the Phoenix/East Valley.