Today marks completion of family mediation week. In this blog we sum up the mediation process and, as thought about in our historic blogs, examine the key advantages of mediation and other techniques of disagreement resolution as a way of solving the useful arrangements following separation.
The family mediation procedure
mediation normally starts 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 procedure and think about independently with them whether there are any concerns which would mean that mediation is not proper.
following the initial calls, the mediator will have a conference with each party separately (this is often called a Mediation Info Assessment Fulfilling (MIAM)) to discuss the background briefly and explain a little bit more about the mediation process. The preliminary meetings are confidential therefore the content will not be discussed with the other celebration.
First joint conference
following the private conferences, if the parties want to proceed with mediation, they will organize a joint session with the mediator. The very first conference is utilized to go through the Agreement to Mediate type, deal with any interim or pushing concerns and to set the agenda for future sessions.
Further joint meetings
the focus of future conferences will depend on the problems the parties want to cover but this will generally include conversation around the arrangements for the children followed by a review of the parties’ financial disclosure and an expedition of possible monetary settlement.
On the occasion that a contract is reached, the mediator can tape the relevant details and choices in a number of documents called:
- Open Financial Declaration
this records the parties’ financial information as set out in the monetary disclosure offered. This is an open rather than without prejudice file.
- Memorandum of Comprehending
this records the discussions in mediation and the general decisions reached. This is a without prejudice file and can not be revealed in any court proceedings.
- Parenting Strategy
this records the arrangements for the children and any other matters moms and dads wish to record in respect of the daily care of their children.
Any arrangement reached in mediation is not legally binding till the parties have had independent legal guidance on it. Once this has actually occurred, one of the celebration’s legal representatives 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 variety of advantages to the mediation procedure, a few of which are set out below. Mediation is not right for everybody and the mediator and a party’s own lawyer will consider any concerns which might make mediation unsuitable or difficult. The advantages 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 validate what they wish to cover in mediation. You can resolve matters important to your own family and those which may not otherwise matter in a court procedure.
- Mediation sessions can be arranged for a time and location hassle-free to you and the mediator. You choose the length of time in between sessions and handle its speed. You won’t need to wait months for the next date as can happen in a court procedure, and equally you can guarantee you each have sufficient time to look at monetary disclosure and review recommendations made.
- Decisions reached in mediation can be customized to fit your family. This is in contrast to court imposed decisions where the judge might not have the power to enforce comparable plans or has disliked the subtlety of why a specific idea may be better.
When a choice 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 interaction and a continuous co-parenting relationship.
- Personal privacy
mediation is a private and private process which means that parties are motivated to be open about choices they want to think about. This normally leads to parties making suggestions they would be reluctant to make in court procedures. For high profile clients, it is also a way of keeping information of your relationship out of the public eye.
- Expenses and speed
if effective, mediation can be more affordable and quicker than court proceedings. By setting the program and selecting the number of sessions you have, parties have a lot more control over the procedure than when they become part of court procedures. The mediator will likewise handle the procedure and ensure that mediation does not continue if it is unproductive or making matters worse.
Although family mediation has actually been in focus today with #FamilyMediationweek, in suitable cases it can supply an indispensable way of resolving family disputes successfully and amicably and it must be something that is encouraged all year.