Today marks completion of family mediation week. In this blog we sum up the mediation procedure and, as thought about in our historic blogs, take a look at the key advantages of mediation and other approaches of conflict resolution as a way of solving the useful arrangements following separation.
The family mediation procedure
Very first call
mediation usually starts with the mediator having a short preliminary call with each of the parties. The function of this call is to speak to the parties about the mediation procedure and think about independently with them whether there are any concerns which would imply that mediation is not appropriate.
following the preliminary calls, the mediator will have a conference with each celebration independently (this is often called a Mediation Info Assessment Fulfilling (MIAM)) to talk about the background briefly and describe a little more about the mediation procedure. The preliminary conferences are confidential and so the material will not be talked about with the other party.
First joint conference
following the private meetings, if the parties wish to proceed with mediation, they will set up a joint session with the mediator. The first meeting is utilized to go through the Contract to Mediate kind, handle any interim or pressing concerns and to set the agenda for future sessions.
More joint meetings
the focus of future meetings will depend on the issues the parties wish to cover but this will generally involve conversation around the arrangements for the children followed by an evaluation of the parties’ financial disclosure and an expedition of possible monetary settlement.
On the occasion that a contract is reached, the mediator can tape-record the pertinent details and choices in a variety of files called:
- Open Financial Declaration
this records the parties’ financial information as set out in the monetary disclosure provided. This is an open instead of without prejudice file.
- Memorandum of Comprehending
this records the conversations in mediation and the overall choices reached. This is a without prejudice file and can not be disclosed in any court procedures.
- Parenting Strategy
this records the plans for the children and any other matters moms and dads want to document in regard of the everyday care of their children.
Any contract reached in mediation is not legally binding until the parties have actually had independent legal suggestions on it. As soon as this has occurred, one of the celebration’s lawyers 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 advantages 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 think about any problems which may make mediation tough 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 agenda and verify what they wish to cover in mediation. You can attend to matters essential to your own family and those which might not otherwise matter in a court process.
- Mediation sessions can be scheduled a time and location convenient to you and the mediator. You select the length of time in between sessions and handle its rate. You will not need to wait months for the next date as can occur in a court procedure, and equally you can ensure you each have adequate time to collect monetary disclosure and reflect on tips made.
- Decisions reached in mediation can be customized to match your family. This is in contrast to court imposed decisions where the judge might not have the power to impose similar plans or has actually not appreciated the subtlety of why a specific idea might be 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 communication and an ongoing co-parenting relationship.
- Personal privacy
mediation is a personal and personal process which indicates that parties are motivated to be open about options they wish to think about. This normally results in parties making ideas they would be reluctant to make in court proceedings. For high profile clients, it is also a way of keeping information of your relationship out of the public eye.
- Expenses and speed
if successful, mediation can be less expensive and quicker than court proceedings. By setting the program and picking the variety of sessions you have, parties have much more control over the process than when they become part of court procedures. The mediator will also make sure and handle the procedure that mediation does not continue if it is unproductive or making matters worse.
Family mediation has been in focus this week with #FamilyMediationweek, in suitable cases it can provide an invaluable way of solving family conflicts successfully and amicably and it need to be something that is encouraged all year.