Pre-Marriage mediation is exactly what it sounds like. It’s a dispute prevention process that helps you bring clarity to some topics that can become a problem later. It will help you have conversations that you maybe didn’t know you should have, were afraid to have, or simply too much in love to consider ever not seeing eye to eye.

I know, I know…you just want to talk about the warm and fuzzies, I’m sorry for drawing your attention away from that.

I just see people in my office on the other side of this, when the warm and fuzzies have gone. I KNOW if many of them had started having some of the more difficult conversations earlier it would have set them up for more success.

Mediation can help you have these conversations in a casual and non-judgmental environment. Who knows? It may even be fun!

Let me start by asking this question…Do you know how to fight fair?

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You probably didn’t think of pre-marriage mediation before did you? Well, congratulations on getting this far.

Mediation can help you have these conversations, think about what you want and document your intentions, wishes and decisions in a Dispute Prevention Document. Set your marriage up for success by addressing concerns now.

You may be just starting out and getting married for the first time, have some life experience and found the love of your life, or coming at this after a separation or divorce. There are no prerequisites for getting married and I certainly don’t want to generalize or stereotype. I can’t speak to all of the topics couples may face but I did want to raise some of the more common ones below.

First Marriage

Planning and paying for the wedding

Keeping your last name

Sharing accounts or keeping them separate

Knowing each of your financial positions at Date of Marriage

Children yes/no? How many? Adopt?

Maternity & paternity leave and staying home with a child

Decision making for big purchases

Managing gifts of $$ from family

Employment decisions (self, career goals, shifts)

Life Insurance needs

Retirement planning

Discussing how you fight (and of course make up)

Talking about your expectations of being married

Not Your First Marriage

Same list as the other side but now you have more context for why these things are important

You may have more assets (or sadly debt) because of your previous relationship

Protecting your assets may be more important

You are more likely to be blending a family

Trust, respect and what it means to each of you



There is also the dreaded “D” word, that’s right divorce. I know the problems separating and divorcing couples face, and I want to help you avoid those issues.

More and more I see clients coming in who are unable to identify their date of marriage assets and liabilities which can make a big difference in a divorce. I see couples who agreed on something before they got married and now say that agreement didn’t happen as it doesn’t benefit them, and they are mad at their soon to be ex. I see couples who just didn’t know how to communicate or how to fight fair.

I don’t say this to scare anyone or to be a pessimist but wouldn’t it be better to reduce the risk now? Have the conversations and document your intentions. Use your Dispute Prevention Document only as insurance in the off chance that things don’t work out. I can tell you that the person you separate from it more often than not the same person they were when you married.