Today marks completion of family mediation week. In this blog site we sum up the mediation procedure and, as considered in our historic blog sites, take a look at the essential benefits of mediation and other techniques of dispute resolution as a way of solving the useful arrangements following separation.
The family mediation procedure
mediation typically begins with the mediator having a short preliminary call with each of the parties. The function of this call is to speak with the parties about the mediation process and consider separately with them whether there are any problems which would imply that mediation is not suitable.
following the preliminary calls, the mediator will have a meeting with each celebration separately (this is typically called a Mediation Details Evaluation Fulfilling (MIAM)) to discuss the background briefly and explain a bit more about the mediation procedure. The initial meetings are confidential and so the content will not be gone over with the other party.
First joint meeting
following the specific conferences, if the parties want to proceed with mediation, they will arrange a joint session with the mediator. The very first meeting is used to go through the Contract to Mediate kind, deal with any interim or pressing issues and to set the program for future sessions.
More joint conferences
the focus of future conferences will depend upon the problems the parties want to cover however this will typically include discussion around the arrangements for the children followed by a review of the parties’ monetary disclosure and an expedition of possible monetary settlement.
On the occasion that a contract is reached, the mediator can tape-record the relevant info and choices in a number of documents called:
- Open Financial Declaration
this records the parties’ monetary info as set out in the financial disclosure offered. This is an open rather than without prejudice file.
- Memorandum of Comprehending
this records the discussions in mediation and the general choices reached. This is a without prejudice file and can not be divulged in any court proceedings.
- Parenting Strategy
this records the arrangements for the children and any other matters parents wish to record in respect of the day to day care of their children.
Any agreement reached in mediation is not lawfully binding until the parties have had independent legal advice on it. Once this has actually occurred, one of the celebration’s lawyers 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 variety of benefits to the mediation process, a few of which are set out listed below. Mediation is wrong for everybody and the mediator and a party’s own lawyer will think about any issues which may make mediation tough or inappropriate. The benefits include:
- The mediator will encourage the parties to set the program and verify what they wish to cover in mediation. You can resolve matters important 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 place practical to you and the mediator. You choose the length of time in between sessions and handle its speed. You will not have to wait months for the next date as can occur in a court process, and similarly you can guarantee you each have enough time to collect monetary disclosure and review suggestions made.
- Choices reached in mediation can be customized to suit your family. This is in contrast to court imposed decisions where the judge might not have the power to enforce comparable arrangements or has not appreciated the subtlety of why a specific tip may 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 designed to promote interaction and an ongoing co-parenting relationship.
- Personal privacy
mediation is a personal and confidential process which means that parties are motivated to be open about options they wish to consider. This normally results in parties making ideas they would hesitate to make in court procedures. For high profile customers, it is also a way of keeping information of your relationship out of the general public eye.
- Costs and speed
if successful, mediation can be less expensive and quicker than court procedures. By setting the agenda and choosing the variety of sessions you have, parties have far more control over the procedure than when they become part of court proceedings. If it is unproductive or making matters worse, the mediator will also ensure and handle the procedure that mediation does not continue.
Although family mediation has actually remained in focus this week with #FamilyMediationweek, in proper cases it can provide an important method of resolving family disputes successfully and amicably and it need to be something that is motivated all year.