Today marks the end of family mediation week. In this blog site we summarise the mediation procedure and, as thought about in our historic blog sites, take a look at the essential advantages of mediation and other techniques of disagreement resolution as a way of fixing the useful arrangements following separation.
The family mediation procedure
Very first call
mediation usually begins with the mediator having a brief initial call with each of the parties. The purpose of this call is to speak to the parties about the mediation process and consider independently with them whether there are any concerns which would mean that mediation is not appropriate.
following the initial calls, the mediator will have a conference with each party independently (this is frequently called a Mediation Information Evaluation Satisfying (MIAM)) to go over the background briefly and explain a little bit more about the mediation process. The preliminary conferences are personal and so the content will not be talked about with the other celebration.
First joint meeting
following the individual meetings, if the parties want to proceed with mediation, they will arrange a joint session with the mediator. The first conference is used to go through the Contract to Moderate form, deal with any interim or pushing problems and to set the agenda for future sessions.
Further joint conferences
the focus of future meetings will depend upon the concerns the parties wish to cover but this will normally involve conversation around the arrangements for the children followed by a review of the parties’ financial disclosure and an expedition of possible monetary settlement.
In the event that an agreement is reached, the mediator can tape the appropriate details and decisions in a variety of files called:
- Open Financial Declaration
this records the parties’ financial information as set out in the financial disclosure offered. This is an open rather than without prejudice document.
- Memorandum of Understanding
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 regard of the daily care of their children.
Any contract reached in mediation is not lawfully binding up until the parties have actually had independent legal guidance on it. When this has actually taken place, 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 advantages of family mediation
There are a number of benefits to the mediation procedure, a few of which are set out listed below. Mediation is wrong for everybody and a party and the mediator’s own solicitor will think about any concerns which might make mediation difficult or unsuitable. The advantages consist of:
- The mediator will encourage the parties to set the program and verify what they want to cover in mediation. You can attend to matters crucial to your own family and those which might not otherwise be relevant in a court procedure.
- Mediation sessions can be arranged for a time and location hassle-free to you and the mediator. You select the length of time in between sessions and handle its rate. You won’t have to wait months for the next date as can happen in a court process, and equally you can ensure you each have sufficient time to look at monetary disclosure and review suggestions made.
- Choices reached in mediation can be tailored to match your family. This remains in contrast to court imposed choices where the judge may not have the power to impose similar arrangements or has not appreciated the subtlety of why a particular suggestion might be much better.
a mediator’s function is to help with a discussion between the parties and encourage tips about the result. When a choice is made together in mediation, it is more likely that parties will be content with and adhere to it. Mediation is designed to promote communication and a continuous co-parenting relationship. This is particularly important for moms and dads who are going to have a relationship for the rest of their children’s lives.
- Personal privacy
mediation is a personal and personal procedure which indicates that parties are motivated to be open about alternatives they wish to consider. This typically results in parties making suggestions they would be reluctant to make in court procedures. For high profile clients, it is likewise a way of keeping details of your relationship out of the general public eye.
- Expenses and speed
Mediation can be more affordable and quicker than court procedures if successful. By setting the agenda and choosing the number of sessions you have, parties have a lot more control over the process than when they belong to court proceedings. The mediator will likewise make sure and handle the process that mediation does not continue if it is ineffective or making matters worse.
Although family mediation has been in focus today with #FamilyMediationweek, in appropriate cases it can offer an indispensable way of dealing with family disagreements efficiently and amicably and it should be something that is encouraged all year.