Today marks the end of family mediation week. In this blog we summarise the mediation process and, as considered in our historic blogs, analyze the crucial benefits of mediation and other approaches of disagreement resolution as a method of dealing with the practical arrangements following separation.
The family mediation process
mediation typically starts with the mediator having a short initial call with each of the parties. The function of this call is to speak to the parties about the mediation procedure and consider separately with them whether there are any concerns which would suggest that mediation is not appropriate.
following the initial calls, the mediator will have a meeting with each celebration individually (this is typically called a Mediation Information Evaluation Satisfying (MIAM)) to talk about the background briefly and explain a bit more about the mediation procedure. The initial conferences are private therefore the content will not be gone over with the other party.
following the private conferences, if the parties want to proceed with mediation, they will arrange a joint session with the mediator. The first meeting is utilized to go through the Arrangement to Mediate type, handle any interim or pressing problems and to set the program for future sessions.
More joint meetings
the focus of future meetings will depend on the issues the parties want to cover but this will typically include discussion around the plans for the children followed by a review of the parties’ monetary disclosure and an expedition of possible financial settlement.
On the occasion that an arrangement is reached, the mediator can record the pertinent details and choices in a number of documents called:
- Open Financial Declaration
this records the parties’ financial info as set out in the monetary disclosure offered. This is an open rather than without prejudice file.
- Memorandum of Comprehending
this records the conversations in mediation and the general choices reached. This is a without prejudice document and can not be divulged in any court proceedings.
- Parenting Strategy
this records the plans for the children and any other matters moms and dads wish to document in respect of the everyday care of their children.
Any agreement reached in mediation is not legally binding up until the parties have had independent legal guidance on it. Once this has 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 variety of advantages to the mediation procedure, a few of which are set out listed below. Mediation is wrong for everybody and the mediator and a celebration’s own solicitor will consider any concerns which may make mediation inappropriate or hard. The advantages consist of:
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 address matters essential to your own family and those which might not otherwise matter in a court process.
- Mediation sessions can be arranged for a time and location practical to you and the mediator. You pick the length of time in between sessions and manage its pace. You won’t have to wait months for the next date as can take place in a court process, and similarly you can guarantee you each have sufficient time to collate financial disclosure and reflect on suggestions made.
- Decisions reached in mediation can be customized to suit your family. This remains in contrast to court enforced choices where the judge might not have the power to impose similar plans or has not appreciated the subtlety of why a specific recommendation may be better.
a mediator’s role is to help with a discussion between the parties and motivate recommendations about the outcome. 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. This is particularly important for parents who are going to have a relationship for the rest of their children’s lives.
mediation is a personal and private process which indicates that parties are motivated to be open about choices they wish to think about. This generally leads to parties making suggestions they would hesitate to make in court procedures. For high profile customers, it is likewise a method 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 far more control over the procedure than when they become part of court procedures. If it is ineffective or making matters worse, the mediator will likewise make sure and manage the process that mediation does not continue.
Although family mediation has been in focus this week with #FamilyMediationweek, in proper cases it can offer a vital way of dealing with family disagreements successfully and agreeably and it should be something that is motivated all year.