We are an expert all issues family mediation service dedicated to helping separating couples exercise future arrangements for children, residential or commercial property and finances for Personal and Legal Aid clients. We assess for Legal Aid– evaluation free. Ask about totally free meetings for private clients.

National Family Mediation Service assists you make you own decisions about what is best for you and your family in future without litigating. We will help you enhance communication, resolve your conflicts and reach a workable, lasting solution quickly, compassionately and cost-effectively.

Our excellent group of family arbitrators are trained to guide you through the procedure to decrease the distress, expense and hold-up so frequently connected with separation and divorce.

family Mediation Process

The Essentials of Family Mediation


Mediation is a voluntary, consensual procedure that utilizes a qualified, neutral 3rd party to assist in the negotiation of disputes. The objective is to reach a binding settlement arrangement.


” Generally … almost any civil disagreement is open to mediation.”
Virginia Supreme Court Chief Justice Carrico, 3/27/95


Using mediation is increasing considerably across the country. The benefits of mediation are recognized to be considerable and various.

  • Control by celebrations– The celebrations stay in charge of the outcome.
  • Opportunity for much better outcomes– The parties understand their conflict much better than any court or jury could.
  • Efficient– Around 85% of cases dealt with by The National Family Mediation Service reach settlement.
  • Greater compliance– Parties are most likely to adhere to a mediated outcome than with a judgment or an arbitration award.
  • Minimized time and expenditure– Mediation can be concluded in a single day or in a series of shorter sessions over an amount of time chosen by the celebrations.
  • Voluntary, consensual procedure– The parties remain in control. The result is identified by the celebrations.
  • Preserved, improved relationships in between parties– Protecting or improving relationships is especially crucial in family cases where the parties may have ongoing transactions with each other or with children or other member of the family.
  • Decreased stress and interruptions to continuous activities.
  • Enhanced relationships and skills– Mediation assists parties in future settlements and conflict resolution.


There are numerous methods to get to mediation.

  1. Usually, one celebration decides it would be valuable to resolve the dispute through mediation and suggests mediation to the other party.
  2. In pending litigation, the court frequently suggests or even orders that the parties consider mediation. A personnel person will provide details about the mediation procedure and will address any questions the parties or their lawyers might have.


When the celebrations have consented to moderate, The National Family Mediation Service works with the celebrations or their counsel to determine which of its arbitrators would be finest suited to serve. The staff individual managing the case may suggest several conciliators based on the problems or profile of the case, although the parties or counsel might ask for a specific mediator also.

The fundamental role of a mediator is not to render a choice however to assist in a negotiation and assist the celebrations in clarifying their problems and solving them. An additional function of a mediator might be to examine the concerns in conflict if the parties choose. These functions should be thought about in selecting a mediator. Other elements to be thought about include the specific attributes of the mediator:

  • Neutrality
  • Integrity
  • Interpersonal abilities
  • Experience
  • Training
  • Topic proficiency, if the celebrations want examination of the issues
  • Accessibility


Before the mediation takes place, a personnel individual will speak with the parties or their attorneys to make sure that the case is suitable for mediation, and to discuss who will be present, the format of mediation, and costs. The mediator will perform a conference call with the parties and/or their lawyers prior to the mediation.


At the mediation itself, celebrations can have their lawyers present or they can choose to do so themselves. Attorneys have an important function to play in making sure that parties have a clear understanding of their legal rights and obligations as they go through the mediation procedure. Conciliators are not permitted to provide legal advice and are ethically and statutorily obligated to make it clear to the celebrations who pick to moderate that they should rely on legal suggestions. The mediated contract that parties reach is only as strong as the information on which it is based, and it is critical that parties be well notified and clearly recommended about the implications of the choices they are making.


The mediator first describes the procedure to be used and develops the ground rules. All those in attendance indication a mediation arrangement which, among other things, binds them to rigorous confidentiality.

One party provides his or her view of the conflict. The other celebration is then provided a chance to present his or her view of the case.

With the help of the mediator, the parties and their counsel then start settlements. The mediator helps the celebrations focus on determining the real issues and addressing them.

While the legal aspects of the family conflict are certainly pertinent in the settlement, possible services might include extra-legal issues. These non-legal matters are frequently at the heart of the dispute, yet they may not be properly addressed in a courtroom.

The settlements continue till successfully completed or till the celebrations decide that they are unable to reach a resolution. The analytical may take place in confidential private sessions (” caucuses”) in between each celebration and the mediator, with counsel, and may likewise happen over more than one session.

Depending on the requirements of the celebrations, family mediations may either be arranged to be completed in one day or in 2- to three-hour sessions. Often, it is decided in the preliminary session that extra info needs to be gathered or that the parties require time outside of the mediation to finish specific tasks or to try to find other possible solutions to a particular problem. In that case, the participants just schedule a subsequent session to provide time to collect the necessary information.

Child between parents happy

When the celebrations reach agreement, a settlement agreement is decreased to composing. The lawyers draft the regards to the agreement. If questions are raised during the legal evaluation, the celebrations can accept return to mediation to talk about the concerns and finalize the arrangement, if needed. Or they can waive this legal evaluation and accept a binding agreement in the mediation. Agreements affecting the rights of children may go through ongoing judicial review.

The fundamental style of The National Family Mediation Service is facilitation. This involves the individual abilities of a mediator utilized to clarify interests, determine concerns, test the merit of positions, and usually to help the celebrations in moving toward common ground. A mediator may provide legal details including the neutral assessment of concerns. Such assessment is supplied only where (1) the parties request it; (2) the mediator believes that the asked for assessment is appropriate and required; (3) the mediator is qualified to provide such examination; (4) there is sufficient information on which to base such examination; and (5) such assessment is offered in competent and fairly broad terms. As the mediation proceeds, the needs of the parties may alter, and the nature of the services provided might also change, as the celebrations might request.

The National Family Mediation Service do not offer other or legal professional advice. They do not predict specific results to legal conflicts. While they may suggest possible alternatives by which to resolve a conflict, they do not advise any specific service since the supreme choice is made by the celebrations.

The parties and their counsel are well served by suitable preparation, whether the attorney will be participating in the actual mediation or not. Both the celebration and attorney should have:

  • A practical view of the problems in the disagreement.
  • A clear understanding of his or her objectives and requirements.
  • A preliminary presentation of his or her viewpoint.
  • A desire to jeopardize.

In addition, they need to be prepared to:

  • Listen
  • Examine
  • Explore alternatives to be considered in the general session and in caucuses.
  • Check out and examine different settlement scenarios.
  • Find ways to help the other party to be versatile on critical issues.
  • Check out a resolution
  • Decide

The crucial to that result is that the choice maker in mediation is not a judge, the attorneys, or the mediator– the decision makers are the celebrations, with the advice and support of counsel. Hence, the most reliable approach to mediation is likely to be based on a desire to reach an excellent resolution and end the disagreement, rather than the combative style that may have identified previously interactions between the parties and their counsel.

Typically, the interaction happening within the mediation process is private. This motivates a complete exchange of sensations, truths and views.

Prior to the mediation happens, a personnel person will speak with the parties or their legal representatives to make sure that the case is suitable for mediation, and to discuss who will be present, the format of mediation, and costs. The mediator will perform a conference call with the celebrations and/or their lawyers prior to the mediation. The mediated agreement that parties reach is only as strong as the info on which it is based, and it is vital that celebrations be well notified and clearly encouraged about the ramifications of the decisions they are making.

As the mediation proceeds, the requirements of the celebrations might change, and the nature of the services provided may likewise change, as the celebrations may ask for.

The crucial to that outcome is that the decision maker in mediation is not a judge, the legal representatives, or the mediator– the choice makers are the parties, with the suggestions and assistance of counsel.

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Learn More About MEDIATION From WikiPedia

Mediation is a structured, interactive process where an impartial third party assists disputing parties in resolving conflict through the use of specialized communication and negotiation techniques. All participants in mediation are encouraged to actively participate in the process. Mediation is a “party-centered” process in that it is focused primarily upon the needs, rights, and interests of the parties. The mediator uses a wide variety of techniques to guide the process in a constructive direction and to help the parties find their optimal solution. A mediator is facilitative in that she/he manages the interaction between parties and facilitates open communication. Mediation is also evaluative in that the mediator analyzes issues and relevant norms (“reality-testing”), while refraining from providing prescriptive advice to the parties (e.g., “You should do… .”).

Mediation, as used in law, is a form of alternative dispute resolution resolving disputes between two or more parties with concrete effects. Typically, a third party, the mediator, assists the parties to negotiate a settlement. Disputants may mediate disputes in a variety of domains, such as commercial, legal, diplomatic, workplace, community, and family matters.

The term “mediation” broadly refers to any instance in which a third party helps others reach an agreement. More specifically, mediation has a structure, timetable, and dynamics that “ordinary” negotiation lacks. The process is private and confidential, possibly enforced by law. Participation is typically voluntary. The mediator acts as a neutral third party and facilitates rather than directs the process. Mediation is becoming a more peaceful and internationally accepted solution to end the conflict. Mediation can be used to resolve disputes of any magnitude.

The term “mediation,” however, due to language as well as national legal standards and regulations is not identical in content in all countries but rather has specific connotations, and there are some differences between Anglo-Saxon definitions and other countries, especially countries with a civil, statutory law tradition.

Mediators use various techniques to open, or improve, dialogue and empathy between disputants, aiming to help the parties reach an agreement. Much depends on the mediator’s skill and training. As the practice gained popularity, training programs, certifications, and licensing followed, which produced trained and professional mediators committed to the discipline.

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