Today marks the end of family mediation week. In this blog we sum up the mediation procedure and, as considered in our historical blogs, examine the key advantages of mediation and other approaches of conflict resolution as a method of solving the practical plans following separation.
The family mediation procedure
mediation usually begins 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 procedure and think about individually with them whether there are any concerns which would mean that mediation is not proper.
following the initial calls, the mediator will have a meeting with each party individually (this is often called a Mediation Details Evaluation Fulfilling (MIAM)) to talk about the background briefly and explain a little bit more about the mediation process. The initial conferences are personal and so the material will not be talked about with the other celebration.
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 used to go through the Arrangement to Moderate kind, 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 upon the issues the parties want to cover but this will typically involve discussion around the arrangements for the children followed by a review of the parties’ financial disclosure and an expedition of possible monetary settlement.
In case an arrangement is reached, the mediator can tape the appropriate information and decisions in a variety of documents called:
- Open Financial Statement
this records the parties’ financial details as set out in the monetary disclosure provided. This is an open rather than without prejudice file.
- Memorandum of Understanding
this records the conversations in mediation and the total choices reached. This is a without prejudice file and can not be revealed in any court procedures.
- Parenting Plan
this records the plans for the children and any other matters moms and dads want to document in regard of the day to day care of their children.
Any contract reached in mediation is not legally binding up until the parties have had independent legal recommendations on it. Once this has actually occurred, one of the celebration’s lawyers will generally turn the Memorandum of Understanding 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 wrong for everybody and a celebration and the mediator’s own lawyer will think about any issues which might make mediation difficult or unsuitable. The advantages include:
- The mediator will motivate the parties to set the agenda and validate what they wish to cover in mediation. You can deal with 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 location convenient to you and the mediator. You pick the length of time in between sessions and manage its speed. You won’t have to wait months for the next date as can take place in a court procedure, and equally you can ensure you each have adequate time to collect monetary disclosure and reflect on tips made.
- Choices reached in mediation can be tailored to match your family. This remains in contrast to court enforced choices where the judge might not have the power to enforce similar arrangements or has not appreciated the subtlety of why a specific suggestion may be much better.
a mediator’s role is to facilitate a discussion between the parties and encourage ideas about the outcome. When a choice is made together in mediation, it is more likely that parties will be content with and adhere to it. Mediation is designed to promote communication and a continuous co-parenting relationship. This is especially important for parents who are going to have a relationship for the rest of their children’s lives.
mediation is a private and personal procedure which means that parties are encouraged to be open about options they wish to think about. This typically leads to parties making ideas they would hesitate to make in court proceedings. For high profile customers, it is also a way of keeping information of your relationship out of the general public eye.
- Expenses and speed
Mediation can be more affordable and quicker than court procedures if effective. By setting the agenda and selecting the number of sessions you have, parties have a lot more control over the process than when they are part of court proceedings. If it is ineffective or making matters worse, the mediator will also manage the process and ensure that mediation does not continue.
Family mediation has actually been in focus this week with #FamilyMediationweek, in proper cases it can supply an invaluable way of fixing family disagreements successfully and agreeably and it should be something that is encouraged all year.