Today marks completion of family mediation week. In this blog site we sum up the mediation process and, as considered in our historic blogs, take a look at the crucial benefits of mediation and other methods of dispute resolution as a method of dealing with the useful plans following separation.
The family mediation process
mediation normally starts with the mediator having a short initial call with each of the parties. The purpose of this call is to talk to the parties about the mediation process and consider separately with them whether there are any issues which would mean that mediation is not proper.
following the preliminary calls, the mediator will have a conference with each celebration separately (this is frequently called a Mediation Info Assessment Fulfilling (MIAM)) to talk about the background briefly and explain a bit more about the mediation process. The preliminary meetings are personal and so the material will not be gone over with the other party.
following the individual conferences, if the parties want to proceed with mediation, they will organize a joint session with the mediator. The very first conference is used to go through the Contract to Moderate kind, deal with any interim or pressing issues and to set the program for future sessions.
Additional joint conferences
the focus of future meetings will depend on the concerns the parties want to cover but this will generally include discussion around the plans for the children followed by an evaluation of the parties’ financial disclosure and an expedition of possible monetary settlement.
In case an arrangement is reached, the mediator can tape the pertinent details and decisions in a variety of files called:
- Open Financial Declaration
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 overall choices reached. This is a without prejudice document and can not be divulged in any court procedures.
- Parenting Plan
this records the arrangements for the children and any other matters parents wish to document in respect of the everyday care of their children.
Any contract reached in mediation is not legally binding up until the parties have had independent legal recommendations on it. As soon as this has happened, one of the party’s attorneys will usually turn the Memorandum of Understanding 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, some of which are set out listed below. Mediation is not right for everybody and the mediator and a celebration’s own solicitor will think about any issues which may make mediation difficult or inappropriate. The benefits 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 wish to cover in mediation. You can deal with matters essential to your own family and those which might not otherwise be relevant in a court process.
- Mediation sessions can be scheduled a time and place convenient to you and the mediator. You select the length of time in between sessions and handle its speed. You will not need to wait months for the next date as can take place in a court procedure, and similarly you can guarantee you each have sufficient time to collect monetary disclosure and reflect on recommendations 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 similar arrangements or has actually disliked the subtlety of why a specific idea may be better.
When a decision is made together in mediation, it is more most likely that parties will be content with and stick to it. Mediation is designed to promote communication and an ongoing co-parenting relationship.
mediation is a private and personal procedure which suggests that parties are motivated to be open about choices they want to think about. This normally results in parties making ideas they would be reluctant to make in court procedures. For high profile customers, it is also a method of keeping details of your relationship out of the general public eye.
- Expenses and speed
Mediation can be more affordable and quicker than court proceedings if successful. By setting the program and picking the variety of sessions you have, parties have much more control over the process than when they are part of court procedures. The mediator will also manage the procedure and guarantee that mediation does not continue if it is ineffective or making matters worse.
Family mediation has been in focus this week with #FamilyMediationweek, in proper cases it can offer an invaluable way of dealing with family disagreements successfully and agreeably and it should be something that is encouraged all year.