Today marks the end of family mediation week. In this blog we sum up the mediation process and, as thought about in our historic blog sites, take a look at the key advantages of mediation and other methods of conflict resolution as a way of dealing with the useful arrangements following separation.
The family mediation process
Very first call
mediation usually starts with the mediator having a brief initial call with each of the parties. The purpose of this call is to talk with the parties about the mediation procedure and consider independently with them whether there are any issues which would suggest that mediation is not suitable.
following the initial calls, the mediator will have a meeting with each celebration individually (this is frequently called a Mediation Information Evaluation Fulfilling (MIAM)) to discuss the background briefly and describe a bit more about the mediation procedure. The preliminary meetings are private and so the material will not be discussed with the other celebration.
following the individual conferences, if the parties wish to proceed with mediation, they will set up a joint session with the mediator. The 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 conferences
the focus of future meetings will depend upon the issues the parties want to cover but this will normally involve discussion around the plans for the children followed by a review of the parties’ monetary disclosure and an exploration of possible monetary settlement.
On the occasion that an arrangement is reached, the mediator can record the pertinent info and decisions in a variety of files called:
- Open Financial Statement
this records the parties’ monetary details as set out in the financial disclosure provided. This is an open rather than without prejudice document.
- Memorandum of Understanding
this records the conversations in mediation and the overall decisions reached. This is a without prejudice document and can not be disclosed in any court proceedings.
- Parenting Plan
this records the arrangements for the children and any other matters moms and dads wish to record in regard of the everyday care of their children.
Any agreement reached in mediation is not lawfully binding till the parties have had independent legal suggestions on it. When this has actually occurred, among the celebration’s legal representatives will typically 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, some of which are set out below. Mediation is wrong for everyone and a party and the mediator’s own solicitor will consider any problems which may make mediation hard or unsuitable. 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 encourage the parties to set the program and validate what they want to cover in mediation. You can resolve matters crucial to your own family and those which might 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 will not have to wait months for the next date as can happen in a court procedure, and equally you can ensure you each have adequate time to collect monetary disclosure and review ideas made.
- Decisions reached in mediation can be tailored to suit your family. This remains in contrast to court imposed decisions where the judge might not have the power to enforce comparable plans or has actually not appreciated the subtlety of why a specific suggestion may be much better.
When a choice 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 an ongoing co-parenting relationship.
mediation is a personal and personal procedure which means that parties are motivated to be open about options they wish to consider. This typically 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.
- Costs and speed
if successful, 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 procedure than when they are part of court proceedings. If it is ineffective or making matters worse, the mediator will likewise handle the process and make sure that mediation does not continue.
Although family mediation has actually remained in focus today with #FamilyMediationweek, in appropriate cases it can provide a vital way of fixing family disagreements efficiently and amicably and it must be something that is motivated all year.