Today marks the end of family mediation week. In this blog site we summarise the mediation procedure and, as thought about in our historical blog sites, take a look at the essential advantages of mediation and other methods of dispute resolution as a method of solving the useful arrangements following separation.
The family mediation procedure
mediation typically begins with the mediator having a short initial call with each of the parties. The purpose of this call is to speak to the parties about the mediation procedure and consider separately with them whether there are any problems which would indicate that mediation is not proper.
following the initial calls, the mediator will have a meeting with each party separately (this is frequently called a Mediation Information Assessment Satisfying (MIAM)) to go over the background briefly and explain a little bit more about the mediation process. The initial meetings are personal therefore the material will not be discussed with the other party.
following the individual conferences, if the parties want to proceed with mediation, they will organize a joint session with the mediator. The first conference is used to go through the Contract to Moderate form, handle any interim or pushing concerns and to set the program for future sessions.
Additional joint meetings
the focus of future meetings will depend on the concerns the parties want to cover however 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 an arrangement is reached, the mediator can record the relevant info and choices in a variety of files called:
- Open Financial Statement
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 Understanding
this records the conversations in mediation and the total choices reached. This is a without prejudice document and can not be disclosed in any court procedures.
- Parenting Plan
this records the plans for the children and any other matters parents wish to document in respect of the everyday care of their children.
Any contract reached in mediation is not legally binding up until the parties have had independent legal suggestions on it. Once this has actually occurred, among the celebration’s lawyers will normally 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 benefits to the mediation procedure, a few of which are set out listed below. Mediation is wrong for everyone and a celebration and the mediator’s own lawyer will consider any problems which may make mediation inappropriate or hard. 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 agenda and verify what they wish to cover in mediation. You can resolve matters essential to your own family and those which may not otherwise be relevant in a court procedure.
- Mediation sessions can be scheduled a time and place convenient to you and the mediator. You choose the length of time between sessions and handle its speed. You will not need to wait months for the next date as can take place in a court procedure, and similarly you can ensure you each have enough time to look at financial disclosure and review suggestions made.
- Choices reached in mediation can be tailored to suit your family. This is in contrast to court imposed choices where the judge might not have the power to enforce comparable arrangements or has actually disliked the subtlety of why a particular recommendation might be better.
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 communication and a continuous co-parenting relationship.
mediation is a private and personal procedure which implies that parties are encouraged to be open about alternatives they want to think about. This usually results in parties making suggestions they would be reluctant to make in court proceedings. For high profile clients, it is also a method of keeping information of your relationship out of the general public eye.
- Expenses and speed
if effective, mediation can be cheaper and quicker than court proceedings. By setting the program and picking 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 handle the process and ensure that mediation does not continue.
Although family mediation has remained in focus today with #FamilyMediationweek, in proper cases it can offer an indispensable method of dealing with family disagreements efficiently and amicably and it need to be something that is encouraged all year.