Today marks completion of family mediation week. In this blog we summarise the mediation procedure and, as thought about in our historic blogs, analyze the key benefits of mediation and other methods of disagreement resolution as a method of dealing with the useful arrangements following separation.
The family mediation procedure
mediation generally begins with the mediator having a short initial call with each of the parties. The purpose of this call is to talk with the parties about the mediation process and think about independently with them whether there are any issues which would mean that mediation is not proper.
following the preliminary calls, the mediator will have a meeting with each celebration independently (this is often called a Mediation Details Evaluation Satisfying (MIAM)) to talk about the background briefly and describe a little more about the mediation process. The preliminary conferences are private and so the material will not be gone over with the other celebration.
following the private conferences, if the parties wish to proceed with mediation, they will arrange a joint session with the mediator. The first conference is used to go through the Arrangement to Mediate type, handle any interim or pushing problems and to set the program for future sessions.
Additional joint conferences
the focus of future meetings will depend on the problems the parties want to cover but this will generally include discussion around the plans for the children followed by an evaluation of the parties’ financial disclosure and an exploration of possible monetary settlement.
In the event that an arrangement is reached, the mediator can tape-record the relevant info and choices in a variety of files called:
- Open Financial Statement
this records the parties’ monetary info as set out in the monetary disclosure provided. This is an open rather than without prejudice document.
- Memorandum of Comprehending
this records the conversations in mediation and the overall decisions reached. This is a without prejudice document and can not be divulged in any court procedures.
- Parenting Strategy
this records the arrangements for the children and any other matters parents want to record in respect of the daily care of their children.
Any contract reached in mediation is not lawfully binding till the parties have had independent legal suggestions on it. Once this has actually occurred, among the party’s attorneys will usually 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 benefits to the mediation procedure, some of which are set out listed below. Mediation is wrong for everyone and a celebration and the mediator’s own lawyer will consider any concerns which might make mediation difficult or inappropriate. The benefits 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 crucial to your own family and those which may not otherwise matter in a court process.
- Mediation sessions can be scheduled a time and place hassle-free to you and the mediator. You select the length of time in between sessions and manage its speed. You will not 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 collate financial disclosure and reflect on tips made.
- Decisions reached in mediation can be tailored to match your family. This is in contrast to court enforced choices where the judge may not have the power to enforce comparable arrangements or has not appreciated the subtlety of why a particular tip 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 interaction and an ongoing co-parenting relationship.
- Personal privacy
mediation is a confidential and private procedure which implies that parties are motivated to be open about options they wish to think about. This normally leads to parties making suggestions they would be reluctant to make in court procedures. For high profile customers, it is likewise a way of keeping details of your relationship out of the public eye.
- Expenses and speed
Mediation can be more affordable and quicker than court procedures if successful. By setting the agenda and picking the variety of sessions you have, parties have a lot more control over the procedure than when they become part of court procedures. The mediator will likewise make sure and manage the procedure that mediation does not continue if it is unproductive or making matters worse.
Although family mediation has remained in focus today with #FamilyMediationweek, in proper cases it can supply an indispensable method of fixing family disagreements successfully and amicably and it should be something that is encouraged all year.