Menu Contact White & White, Attorneys at Law
Free Initial Consultation 865-622-7768

Confidentiality in mediation and divorce

Divorce is hard, no matter what way you go about it. Mediation attempts to mitigate some of the difficulty by bringing together two basically reasonable adults and helping them work through their differences.

It only works, however, if everyone is willing to negotiate -- which means being honest and laying out all your cards on the table. You can't go into mediation keeping secrets about your financial holdings, debts or any other information as if you are entering a battlefield where you might need to keep some weapons on reserve.

That can be difficult to do if you aren't comfortable about the confidentiality of the proceedings. Fortunately, Tennessee's Rule 31 allows participants engaged in alternative dispute resolution proceedings to be fairly comfortable with the confidentiality of the proceedings.

In other words, you can speak freely with the mediator without fear that whatever you say or do will be used against you later if mediation fails and you end up going on to regular divorce court.

The mediator has the power to also keep any agreement made under Rule 31 confidential from the court -- which could be very important down the line for a number of reasons.

-- You may have, in the heat of the moment, said things that could endanger your right to custody.

-- You may wish to keep the terms of your custody agreement private, particularly if you are a high-profile couple.

-- Your financial information can remain confidential. This is something that can be a little tricky to understand, however. If the mediation fails, anything that would ordinarily be available to the other party through independent means will still be available to the other party.

-- Perhaps most important, the mediator's decisions, conclusions or opinions are also confidential. They generally cannot be compelled to testify in court or discuss the case with the judge, unless both parties agree to the release of confidentiality.

Your attorney with experience in collaborative divorces can provide assistance if you need more information.

Source:, "Rule 31: Alternative Dispute Resolution," accessed June 30, 2017

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Honors & Memberships
  • 10 Best – 2016 | Client Satisfaction | American Institute of Family Law Attorneys(TM)

    He has received this award 2016-2019 for 10 best Attorneys, Client Satisfaction Award.

  • The National Top 40 Under 40 Advocates

    He has received this award 6 years in a row now. for Top 100 Attorneys.

  • 10 Best Attorney | Client Satisfaction | American Institute of Family Law Attorneys(TM)

    Member since 2018 for Top 10 Family Law Attorney for Tennessee.

  • Family Law Top 10 Attorney - 2017-2019 | Attorney and Practice Magazines

    Member since 2017 for Top 10 Family Law Attorney in Tennessee.

  • Best Legal Counsel

    Member since 2018 for Best Legal Counsel in Family Law.

  • Lawyers of Distinction

    Member since 2017 for Excellence in Family and Divorce Top 10% in the USA.

  • Best Attorneys of America | Lifetime Charter Member

    Lifetime charter member for Best Attorneys in America for Tennessee.

Contact Us For A Free Case Evaluation - Email or Call 865-622-7768

White & White, Attorneys at Law, is committed to working with individuals to help them reshape their lives. Perhaps you need a second chance after getting arrested; maybe you're trying to pull yourself together during a frustrating divorce. Whatever the issue, the experienced lawyers at White & White, Attorneys at Law, are here to help.

Individuals are encouraged to contact the firm online or call to schedule a free initial consultation and discuss their legal needs with an experienced Sevierville family law attorney. Appointments are scheduled during regular business hours, but evening and weekend appointments are available upon request.


Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

White & White, Attorneys at Law 216 Phoenix Court Suite D Seymour, TN 37865 Toll Free: 888-551-9046 Phone: 865-622-7768 Fax: 865-577-1655 Seymour Law Office Map

Confidentiality in mediation and divorce | White & White, Attorneys at Law