I just finished an article talking about divorce mediation and was discussing the use of something known as a Memorandum of Understanding, also known as a MOU.
If you are using a divorce mediator, especially a divorce mediator who is not an attorney, what you will come out of mediation with is a Memorandum of Understanding. It is just a fancy word for a document that contains your agreements as discussed through mediation.
A Memorandum of Understanding is not a settlement agreement, however. It cannot be used as part of your divorce judgment or turned into the court. The Memorandum of Understanding served only to document the agreements as discussed with your mediator.
The agreements in the Memorandum of Understanding then need to drafted in the divorce judgment documents. The reason the Memorandum of Understanding cannot be used as part of the judgment or Marital Settlement Agreement is because it lacks the sufficient legalese. That is why we take a divorce mediators MOU and enter the agreements into the judgment.
Some of the language can remain, but regarding certain issues, there is mandatory legalese that is required to be part of the divorce judgment, but not part of the MOU.
For instance, as part of your Marital Settlement Agreement, you most likely have a section to discuss the children and custody and visitation and things like that. That is fine, however the MOU does does not have the legalese that the child custody orders has which is one of the orders in the overall divorce judgment package.
So if you are using divorce mediation to work towards your agreements (which is great by the way) then you will still need a divorce paralegal firm (legal document assistant firm) to prepare your court forms and judgment so your divorce can be finalized with the court.