Today marks the end of family mediation week. In this blog we summarise the mediation procedure and, as thought about in our historical blogs, take a look at the key benefits of mediation and other methods of disagreement resolution as a way of dealing with the useful plans following separation.
The family mediation process
mediation typically starts with the mediator having a brief preliminary call with each of the parties. The function of this call is to talk to the parties about the mediation process and think about separately with them whether there are any issues which would indicate that mediation is not proper.
following the initial calls, the mediator will have a meeting with each party separately (this is typically called a Mediation Information Evaluation Meeting (MIAM)) to discuss the background briefly and discuss a little bit more about the mediation procedure. The preliminary meetings are personal therefore the content will not be gone over with the other celebration.
following the private meetings, if the parties wish to proceed with mediation, they will set up a joint session with the mediator. The very first meeting is utilized to go through the Arrangement to Mediate form, deal with any interim or pressing concerns and to set the agenda for future sessions.
Additional joint conferences
the focus of future meetings will depend upon the concerns the parties want to cover but this will typically involve discussion around the arrangements for the children followed by an evaluation of the parties’ financial disclosure and an expedition of possible financial settlement.
In the event that an arrangement is reached, the mediator can tape-record the relevant information and choices in a number of documents called:
- Open Financial Declaration
this records the parties’ financial details as set out in the financial disclosure supplied. This is an open rather than without prejudice document.
- Memorandum of Understanding
this records the conversations in mediation and the total choices reached. This is a without prejudice file and can not be divulged in any court proceedings.
- Parenting Plan
this records the plans for the children and any other matters moms and dads want to document in regard of the daily care of their children.
Any arrangement reached in mediation is not lawfully binding up until the parties have actually had independent legal recommendations on it. As soon as this has occurred, among the celebration’s attorneys will usually 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, a few of which are set out below. Mediation is not right for everyone and the mediator and a celebration’s own solicitor will consider any concerns which may make mediation challenging or unsuitable. The advantages consist of:
- The mediator will motivate the parties to set the program and validate what they want 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 arranged for a time and place practical to you and the mediator. You select the length of time in between sessions and handle its speed. You won’t have 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 collect monetary disclosure and review ideas made.
- Choices reached in mediation can be tailored to fit your family. This is in contrast to court imposed choices where the judge might not have the power to impose comparable arrangements or has disliked the subtlety of why a particular suggestion might be better.
When a decision is made together in mediation, it is more most likely that parties will be content with and stick to it. Mediation is developed to promote communication and an ongoing co-parenting relationship.
- Personal privacy
mediation is a personal and confidential procedure which implies that parties are encouraged to be open about alternatives they want to think about. This generally leads to parties making suggestions they would hesitate to make in court proceedings. For high profile customers, it is also a method of keeping information of your relationship out of the public eye.
- Costs and speed
Mediation can be cheaper and quicker than court proceedings if effective. By setting the agenda and picking the variety of sessions you have, parties have far more control over the process than when they belong to court procedures. The mediator will also guarantee and handle the process 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 offer an important method of solving family disputes efficiently and agreeably and it should be something that is encouraged all year.