What will happen at a family mediation?
At the start of a family mediation meeting, the mediator will speak to each person on the telephone or on a video call. If you’re both happy that this is the most suitable process, an initial appointment will be arranged.
Most negotiations tend to focus on the care of children or financial affairs, but each family is unique, and we adapt to suit your individual needs. We advise on a consultancy basis, which normally equates to approximately five or six sessions – though it may be more or fewer, depending on the issues being discussed.
During these sessions, the family mediator, you and your (former) partner will sit together, whether in person or over video, to discuss your options.
If, after discussions, arrangements have been reached or both of you decide on certain options, for example, about where your children will live and what time they will spend with each of their parents, a confirmatory mediation document will be drawn up.
Unless you wish to obtain a Court Order about the arrangements for your children, there’s usually no need. If arrangements have been reached about money and property, then it’s always the case that you should have any agreement recorded in a Court Order, known as a Consent Order. This will be explained to the couple during the mediation.
Before, during or after the mediation, it is open to either party to obtain independent legal advice. If you wish, your legal adviser can draft up a legally binding document.
Mediation can begin at any stage, even if you have already begun court proceedings. Remember, it’s not too late to commence family mediation if you feel it’s necessary.
We’re aware of the emotional toll that can be experienced by families engaged in the court process. That’s why we’re committed to assisting you,, no matter how difficult the situation, to make mediation work for you.