Today marks the end of family mediation week. In this blog we summarise the mediation procedure and, as considered in our historical blogs, analyze the essential advantages of mediation and other methods of disagreement resolution as a method of fixing the useful arrangements following separation.
The family mediation procedure
mediation generally begins with the mediator having a brief preliminary call with each of the parties. The purpose of this call is to talk with the parties about the mediation procedure and consider separately with them whether there are any problems which would imply that mediation is not proper.
following the initial calls, the mediator will have a meeting with each party separately (this is frequently called a Mediation Details Assessment Meeting (MIAM)) to go over the background briefly and discuss a bit more about the mediation process. The preliminary conferences are private therefore the content will not be talked about with the other celebration.
following the individual meetings, if the parties wish to proceed with mediation, they will set up a joint session with the mediator. The very first conference is used to go through the Contract to Mediate type, deal with any interim or pushing concerns and to set the agenda for future sessions.
Further joint conferences
the focus of future conferences will depend upon the concerns the parties want to cover but this will normally include discussion around the plans for the children followed by a review of the parties’ monetary disclosure and an exploration of possible monetary settlement.
In the event that an agreement is reached, the mediator can record the relevant info and decisions in a variety of documents called:
- Open Financial Statement
this records the parties’ financial details as set out in the financial disclosure provided. This is an open rather than without prejudice file.
- Memorandum of Understanding
this records the discussions in mediation and the total decisions reached. This is a without prejudice file and can not be disclosed in any court proceedings.
- Parenting Strategy
this records the plans for the children and any other matters parents want to document in respect of the everyday care of their children.
Any agreement reached in mediation is not lawfully binding till the parties have actually had independent legal suggestions on it. As soon as this has taken place, one of the celebration’s lawyers will generally 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 variety of benefits to the mediation procedure, a few of which are set out below. Mediation is not right for everybody and a celebration and the mediator’s own lawyer will consider any problems which may make mediation tough or inappropriate. 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 motivate the parties to set the program and verify what they want to cover in mediation. You can deal with matters crucial to your own family and those which may not otherwise be relevant in a court process.
- Mediation sessions can be arranged for a time and location hassle-free to you and the mediator. You select the length of time between sessions and handle its rate. You won’t need 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 monetary disclosure and review suggestions made.
- Choices reached in mediation can be tailored to fit your family. This is in contrast to court imposed choices where the judge might not have the power to enforce similar arrangements or has actually not appreciated the subtlety of why a specific recommendation may be better.
a mediator’s role is to assist in a dialogue between the parties and encourage ideas about the outcome. When a decision is made together in mediation, it is more likely that parties will be content with and stick to it. Mediation is created to promote interaction and a continuous co-parenting relationship. This is especially important for moms and dads who are going to have a relationship for the rest of their children’s lives.
mediation is a confidential and private procedure which means that parties are motivated to be open about options they wish to think about. This generally leads to parties making recommendations they would hesitate to make in court proceedings. For high profile clients, it is likewise a method of keeping information of your relationship out of the public eye.
- Expenses and speed
if effective, mediation can be more affordable and quicker than court procedures. By setting the program and selecting the number of sessions you have, parties have much more control over the process than when they belong to court proceedings. The mediator will likewise manage the process and guarantee that mediation does not continue if it is unproductive or making matters worse.
Family mediation has been in focus this week with #FamilyMediationweek, in appropriate cases it can supply an important method of solving family conflicts efficiently and amicably and it must be something that is encouraged all year.