Today marks completion of family mediation week. In this blog we summarise the mediation procedure and, as thought about in our historical blogs, analyze the crucial benefits of mediation and other approaches of dispute resolution as a way of dealing with the practical plans following separation.
The family mediation procedure
mediation generally starts with the mediator having a short preliminary call with each of the parties. The purpose of this call is to speak to the parties about the mediation procedure and consider independently with them whether there are any problems which would indicate that mediation is not suitable.
following the preliminary calls, the mediator will have a conference with each celebration separately (this is typically called a Mediation Details Assessment Satisfying (MIAM)) to discuss the background briefly and explain a bit more about the mediation procedure. The preliminary conferences are personal and so the material will not be discussed with the other party.
following the individual meetings, if the parties want to proceed with mediation, they will set up a joint session with the mediator. The first meeting is utilized to go through the Arrangement to Mediate type, handle any interim or pushing problems and to set the agenda for future sessions.
Further joint conferences
the focus of future meetings will depend on the issues the parties wish to cover but this will typically include discussion around the arrangements for the children followed by a review of the parties’ financial disclosure and an exploration of possible monetary settlement.
In case an agreement is reached, the mediator can tape-record the appropriate information and decisions 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 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 Strategy
this records the arrangements for the children and any other matters moms and dads wish to document in regard of the everyday care of their children.
Any contract reached in mediation is not legally binding till the parties have had independent legal advice on it. When this has actually happened, 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 number of advantages to the mediation process, a few of which are set out listed below. Mediation is not right for everyone and a party and the mediator’s own lawyer will think about any issues which might make mediation tough or inappropriate. 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 verify what they wish to cover in mediation. You can resolve matters essential to your own family and those which may not otherwise matter in a court procedure.
- Mediation sessions can be scheduled a time and location hassle-free to you and the mediator. You select the length of time between sessions and manage its pace. You won’t need to wait months for the next date as can happen in a court procedure, and similarly you can ensure you each have enough time to look at financial disclosure and reflect on ideas made.
- Decisions reached in mediation can be tailored to match your family. This remains in contrast to court imposed decisions where the judge may not have the power to impose comparable plans or has actually not appreciated the subtlety of why a specific recommendation may be much better.
a mediator’s function is to facilitate a discussion between the parties and motivate suggestions about the result. When a choice is made together in mediation, it is most likely that parties will be content with and adhere to it. Mediation is created to promote interaction and an ongoing co-parenting relationship. This is especially crucial for parents who are going to have a relationship for the rest of their children’s lives.
mediation is a private 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 general public eye.
- Expenses and speed
if effective, mediation can be more affordable and quicker than court procedures. By setting the agenda and choosing the variety of sessions you have, parties have a lot more control over the process than when they belong to court proceedings. 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 provide an indispensable way of resolving family disputes effectively and amicably and it should be something that is encouraged all year.