Today marks the end of family mediation week. In this blog site we sum up the mediation process and, as thought about in our historic blogs, analyze the key advantages of mediation and other methods of conflict resolution as a way of fixing the practical plans following separation.
The family mediation procedure
mediation typically starts with the mediator having a short preliminary call with each of the parties. The purpose of this call is to talk with the parties about the mediation process and think about individually with them whether there are any issues which would indicate that mediation is not proper.
following the preliminary calls, the mediator will have a conference with each party independently (this is frequently called a Mediation Details Evaluation Satisfying (MIAM)) to go over the background briefly and explain a little bit more about the mediation process. The preliminary conferences are confidential therefore the content will not be talked about with the other party.
following the specific meetings, if the parties wish to proceed with mediation, they will arrange a joint session with the mediator. The very first meeting is used to go through the Arrangement to Mediate form, deal with any interim or pressing concerns and to set the agenda for future sessions.
More joint conferences
the focus of future meetings will depend on the problems the parties wish to cover but this will normally involve discussion around the arrangements for the children followed by a review of the parties’ financial disclosure and an expedition of possible monetary settlement.
On the occasion that an agreement is reached, the mediator can tape-record the pertinent details and decisions in a variety of documents called:
- Open Financial Declaration
this records the parties’ financial info as set out in the financial disclosure offered. This is an open instead of without prejudice document.
- Memorandum of Understanding
this records the discussions in mediation and the total decisions reached. This is a without prejudice document and can not be disclosed in any court proceedings.
- Parenting Plan
this records the plans for the children and any other matters parents wish to record in regard of the daily care of their children.
Any agreement reached in mediation is not legally binding till the parties have had independent legal recommendations on it. As soon as this has actually happened, one of the celebration’s legal representatives will normally turn the Memorandum of Understanding into an order which can be lodged at court for approval by a judge.
The advantages of family mediation
There are a variety of benefits to the mediation process, some of which are set out below. Mediation is not right for everybody and the mediator and a celebration’s own solicitor will consider any concerns which may make mediation tough or unsuitable. The advantages consist of:
Family mediation is a member of the ADR or alternative dispute resolution family. It forms one of the core pillars of mediation services provided globally.
Historically, it is not clear geographically where family mediation first evolved. However, family mediation has been present in various forms in various cultures world-wide for thousands of years.
The system is focused on providing a dispute resolution mechanism to families who are in dispute. Divorce mediation forms part of the family mediation tree of services.
Modern day family mediation is divided into two main fields namely mediation and comediation. In the former of the two fields a single mediator works with the family in dispute. In the latter of the two fields, two or more mediators work with a family in dispute. Mediations are completed by the use of either joint or single caucuses. In single caucuses the mediator/s caucus one party at a time. In joint caucuses the mediator/s work with all sides to the dispute present in the same session. The majority of family disputes have two sides however in family disputes between siblings it is not uncommon for several parties to be involved.
- The mediator will encourage the parties to set the agenda and verify what they want to cover in mediation. You can resolve matters essential to your own family and those which may not otherwise matter in a court process.
- Mediation sessions can be arranged for a time and place hassle-free to you and the mediator. You pick the length of time between sessions and manage its rate. You won’t need to wait months for the next date as can take place in a court process, and equally you can guarantee you each have adequate time to collate monetary disclosure and review ideas made.
- Choices reached in mediation can be tailored to fit your family. This is in contrast to court imposed decisions where the judge might not have the power to enforce similar arrangements or has not appreciated the subtlety of why a specific recommendation might be much better.
a mediator’s role is to facilitate a dialogue between the parties and encourage suggestions about the outcome. When a choice is made together in mediation, it is more likely that parties will be content with and adhere to it. Mediation is developed to promote interaction and an ongoing co-parenting relationship. This is particularly important for parents who are going to have a relationship for the rest of their children’s lives.
- Personal privacy
mediation is a personal and private process which indicates that parties are motivated to be open about options they want to think about. This usually leads to parties making ideas they would be reluctant to make in court proceedings. For high profile customers, it is likewise a way of keeping information of your relationship out of the public eye.
- Expenses and speed
if effective, mediation can be less expensive and quicker than court proceedings. By setting the agenda and picking the variety of sessions you have, parties have much more control over the process than when they belong to court proceedings. The mediator will also handle the process and ensure that mediation does not continue if it is ineffective or making matters worse.
Although family mediation has actually been in focus this week with #FamilyMediationweek, in suitable cases it can offer an important way of dealing with family conflicts effectively and agreeably and it ought to be something that is encouraged all year.