Today marks completion of family mediation week. In this blog we sum up the mediation process and, as considered in our historical blogs, analyze the key advantages of mediation and other approaches of disagreement resolution as a way of fixing the useful plans following separation.
The family mediation procedure
Very first call
mediation typically begins with the mediator having a brief preliminary call with each of the parties. The function 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 preliminary calls, the mediator will have a conference with each celebration independently (this is often called a Mediation Details Assessment Satisfying (MIAM)) to discuss the background briefly and explain a bit more about the mediation process. The initial meetings are private therefore the content will not be gone over with the other celebration.
First joint conference
following the individual meetings, if the parties want to proceed with mediation, they will arrange a joint session with the mediator. The very first meeting is utilized to go through the Arrangement to Mediate type, deal with any interim or pushing issues and to set the program for future sessions.
Further joint conferences
the focus of future conferences will depend upon the problems the parties wish to cover but this will typically include conversation around the plans for the children followed by a review of the parties’ monetary disclosure and an exploration of possible monetary settlement.
On the occasion that a contract is reached, the mediator can record the relevant details and decisions in a number of documents called:
- Open Financial Statement
this records the parties’ monetary details as set out in the monetary disclosure provided. This is an open instead of without prejudice file.
- Memorandum of Understanding
this records the conversations in mediation and the general choices reached. This is a without prejudice file and can not be revealed in any court proceedings.
- Parenting Strategy
this records the plans for the children and any other matters parents want to record in respect of the day to day care of their children.
Any contract reached in mediation is not lawfully binding up until the parties have had independent legal recommendations on it. As soon as this has occurred, one of the party’s attorneys will normally 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 benefits to the mediation procedure, some of which are set out below. Mediation is wrong for everyone and a party and the mediator’s own solicitor will consider any issues which may make mediation difficult or inappropriate. The advantages consist of:
- The mediator will motivate the parties to set the program and confirm what they wish to cover in mediation. You can address matters crucial to your own family and those which may not otherwise be relevant in a court procedure.
- Mediation sessions can be scheduled a time and location convenient to you and the mediator. You choose the length of time in between sessions and handle its rate. You won’t have to wait months for the next date as can take place in a court procedure, and similarly you can guarantee you each have adequate time to look at financial disclosure and reflect on tips made.
- Decisions reached in mediation can be tailored to fit your family. This is in contrast to court enforced choices where the judge may not have the power to impose similar plans or has actually disliked the subtlety of why a specific idea might be much better.
When a decision 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 a continuous co-parenting relationship.
- Personal privacy
mediation is a private and private process which indicates that parties are motivated to be open about alternatives they want to think about. This normally results in parties making ideas they would be reluctant to make in court proceedings. For high profile customers, it is likewise a way of keeping details of your relationship out of the general public eye.
- Expenses and speed
Mediation can be more affordable and quicker than court proceedings if successful. By setting the agenda and selecting the variety of sessions you have, parties have much more control over the process than when they are part of court procedures. The mediator will also handle the procedure and ensure that mediation does not continue if it is unproductive or making matters worse.
Family mediation has actually been in focus this week with #FamilyMediationweek, in proper cases it can supply an important way of resolving family disputes successfully and amicably and it ought to be something that is encouraged all year.