Today marks the end of family mediation week. In this blog we sum up the mediation procedure and, as thought about in our historical blog sites, examine the essential benefits of mediation and other techniques of conflict resolution as a way of resolving the useful plans following separation.
The family mediation procedure
mediation usually begins with the mediator having a brief initial call with each of the parties. The purpose of this call is to speak with the parties about the mediation procedure and think about individually with them whether there are any problems which would suggest that mediation is not appropriate.
following the preliminary calls, the mediator will have a meeting with each party separately (this is often called a Mediation Info Assessment Fulfilling (MIAM)) to talk about the background briefly and discuss a little more about the mediation procedure. The initial meetings are personal therefore the material will not be gone over with the other celebration.
following the specific meetings, if the parties want to proceed with mediation, they will arrange a joint session with the mediator. The very first conference is used to go through the Contract to Moderate type, deal with any interim or pushing issues and to set the program for future sessions.
Further joint meetings
the focus of future conferences will depend upon the issues the parties want to cover however this will generally involve conversation around the arrangements for the children followed by a review of the parties’ financial disclosure and an exploration of possible monetary settlement.
In the event that an arrangement is reached, the mediator can tape-record the relevant info and choices in a number of files called:
- Open Financial Statement
this records the parties’ financial details as set out in the financial disclosure offered. This is an open instead of without prejudice file.
- Memorandum of Comprehending
this records the conversations in mediation and the general choices reached. This is a without prejudice file and can not be revealed in any court proceedings.
- Parenting Strategy
this records the plans for the children and any other matters parents wish to record in respect of the daily care of their children.
Any agreement reached in mediation is not legally binding until the parties have actually had independent legal recommendations on it. Once this has occurred, among the party’s attorneys will typically turn the Memorandum of Comprehending into an order which can be lodged at court for approval by a judge.
The benefits of family mediation
There are a number of benefits to the mediation process, a few of which are set out listed below. Mediation is wrong for everybody and the mediator and a celebration’s own solicitor will consider any issues which may make mediation inappropriate or tough. The advantages include:
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 program and validate what they wish to cover in mediation. You can deal with matters important to your own family and those which may not otherwise matter in a court process.
- Mediation sessions can be arranged for a time and location convenient to you and the mediator. You select the length of time in between sessions and manage its rate. You will not have to wait months for the next date as can take place in a court procedure, and similarly you can ensure you each have sufficient time to collate financial disclosure and reflect on ideas made.
- Choices reached in mediation can be customized to match your family. This is in contrast to court enforced choices where the judge may not have the power to impose comparable plans or has actually not appreciated the subtlety of why a specific suggestion might be much better.
a mediator’s function is to assist in a dialogue in between the parties and motivate ideas about the result. When a choice is made together in mediation, it is more likely that parties will be content with and stay with it. Mediation is designed to promote communication and an ongoing co-parenting relationship. This is especially crucial for parents who are going to have a relationship for the rest of their children’s lives.
- Personal privacy
mediation is a private and personal procedure which indicates that parties are encouraged to be open about alternatives they want to consider. This generally leads to parties making ideas they would be reluctant to make in court procedures. For high profile customers, it is also a way of keeping information of your relationship out of the general public eye.
- Costs and speed
if successful, mediation can be less expensive and quicker than court proceedings. By setting the agenda and choosing the variety of sessions you have, parties have far more control over the procedure than when they are part of court procedures. The mediator will also ensure and handle the process that mediation does not continue if it is unproductive or making matters worse.
Although family mediation has actually been in focus this week with #FamilyMediationweek, in suitable cases it can offer an invaluable way of solving family conflicts efficiently and amicably and it ought to be something that is encouraged all year.