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Family Law

Family Mediation & Arbitration

Jacqueline Major
Jacqueline Major
Partner
Vanessa Friend
Vanessa Friend
Partner
Bharti Shah
Bharti Shah
Partner
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Sarah Harding
Partner
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Abigail Neal
Paralegal
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Avneet Chahal
Paralegal
Ellen Clabburn
Ellen Clabburn
Trainee
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Priyanthi Mohanakumar
Paralegal
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Ruhena Uddin
Paralegal

Our family mediation process helps people who are recently or long-term separated, in the middle of divorce proceedings or dissolving a civil partnership, to engage in discussions and explore all issues surrounding their situation, in a constructive way.

It provides an opportunity to consider what arrangements can be made to resolve issues on both sides, resulting in a positive outcome for everyone involved.

Many couples would like to come to an amicable agreement but find this difficult to achieve on their own. Our family mediation service aims to you reach a resolution in a constructive and cost-effective manner, focusing on what matters most to your family and avoiding stressful and potentially lengthy court proceedings.

What is family mediation?

Family mediation is where a qualified mediator will act as a go-between and discussion facilitator for the two parties involved, to help them reach an agreement. It involves a series of discussions between the mediator and each party and can be done over the phone or in-person.

The mediator facilitates the meetings but does not take sides or make decisions. Their role is to encourage dialogue and help make arrangements for the future that works for everyone.

"[Jacqueline Major] went through everything in detail, let me know exactly what would be in store for me over the coming months. I left our meeting confident that my legal affairs were in expert hands."

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How can mediation help you resolve money & property issues?

Family mediators do not give legal advice around money and property issues. However, they can provide information to couples about the legal processes and the general principles that the court would follow in relation to:

  • Children arranging child maintenance payments, for example
  • Property mortgage payments
  • Money savings, pensions, debts etc.

It’s expected that before and during the family mediation both parties will give each other a clear picture of their respective financial position. This will not only help resolve issues around money and property, but also will help each side to better understand the other’s background and standing.

For a confidential discussion, contact our specialist family mediators on
or request a call back.
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Why choose Hodge Jones & Allen Solicitors?

Many of our team are members of Resolution, a community of family justice professionals, who work to resolve issues in a constructive way. Our family mediation solicitors can help you by:

  • Reducing tension and hostility between families
  • Saving on or avoid the costs of a lengthy court battle
  • Encouraging open and honest channels of communication
  • Providing the appropriate tools to make informed decisions

Listen to Vanessa Friend explaining the benefits of family mediation.

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When should family mediation be considered?

Choosing a family mediation service should be considered when both of you:

  • Have a genuine desire to talk and settle your dispute
  • Expect to remain in contact after the process
  • Want to make arrangements about your children’s future as they grow up
  • Wish to resolve your issues without going to court
Call our specialist family mediators today on
or request a call back
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Online family mediation service available remotely

Our team of mediators will set up an online family mediation service, in the form of video calls. They will use the Zoom video conferencing software, to bring people together in a virtual meeting room.

The video call that they set up will also provide separate, confidential rooms, so they can speak to you privately during the mediation. It’s important to note that only those who have signed an agreement to mediate will be able to attend the Zoom mediation meeting.

What technology will I need for a remote mediation?

We’d be happy to discuss whether the device you will be using is suitable for a remote mediation call, and which would be best. When you have downloaded Zoom, you can join a remote mediation on your:

  • Computer
  • Tablet
  • Smartphone

You may wish to check your internet connection, before beginning a remote mediation, by joining a test meeting.

"The experience and knowledge of various approaches was invaluable. Would highly recommend.”

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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.

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What are the main steps to a successful mediation?

Mediation information & assessment meeting

This is the first meeting with an accredited mediator, where both parties will have the chance to ask questions. The mediator will outline how it will work, explain how many sessions may be needed, their cost and give details of any support services to use throughout the process.

Information gathering

During the first full session, the mediator will ask both you and your (former) partner to tell your side of the story and then ask you some questions. This will help both of you to explain your standpoint and give the mediator more information about the situation, helping them resolve the issues being discussed.

Identifying key issues

The mediator will take these learnings to try and identify the issues that are causing friction. They’ll look to frame these as common goals for both parties to work towards, where smaller issues may be resolved first, to eventually settle larger ones later.

Discussion, consideration & negotiation

The resolutions the mediator comes up with will then be discussed by both parties. Each of you will have a chance to consider these proposals and suggest amendments if they are unhappy – negotiating a solution that works for all involved.

Settlement

Finally, an agreement to settle issues raised will hopefully be achieved. This will ideally keep all parties happy with the terms that have been decided and both parties will be equally committed to seeing them through and resolve any future conflicts that might happen.

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Discover our professional mediation service

We offer a professional family mediation service that can cover all aspects of family separation, including issues about children and financial arrangements due to the breakdown of a marriage or civil partnership. Our family lawyers are qualified family mediators and members of Resolution.

Our Family Law Solicitors are backed by four decades of experience. Our legal practice and team of London family mediation solicitors have a strong track record of achieving favourable client outcomes.

For expert legal advice, call us on
or request a call back.
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"ALWAYS CALM, CLEAR AND PROFESSIONAL, VANESSA HELPED US TO NAVIGATE AND OVERCOME THE TENSIONS BETWEEN US AND WE WERE EVENTUALLY ABLE TO REACH AGREEMENT. VANESSA MADE WHAT FELT LIKE AN IMPOSSIBLE SITUATION FEEL MANAGEABLE AND I’M VERY GRATEFUL TO HER."