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Family Mediation

Family Mediation – the fresh approach to resolving family issues

There is no denying that the breakdown in a relationship is a highly stressful and upsetting time for all involved. Amidst all this turmoil, however, decisions need to be made about children and finances and these can often lead to issues and disagreements that are difficult to resolve. This is where mediation can come in.

Mediation is a process designed to assist couples, and former couples, to make decisions about their children and finances with the help of an impartial third party – a mediator. Mediation is voluntary and any discussions taking place when in mediation are strictly confidential, unless there are issues of child protection, domestic violence or money laundering.

What makes mediation different from traditional approach to family law is that a mediator is impa

rtial. Our mediators are experienced family solicitors and can give you information about legal issues but are not on the side of one party or another giving legal advice.

Who can use family mediation?

Family mediation is usually used by couples, or ex couples and we work with married and divorced couples, cohabiting couples whether heterosexual or same sex and civil partners. If appropriate, and if both parents agree, we can meet with children to offer them the opportunity to put their views forward in a neutral and safe environment.

Family mediation can also be used by other family members such as grandparents when there is need to help resolve a family issue, whether it be in connection with children or finances. Mediation may be free of charge if you are eligible to legal aid.

Benefits of family mediation

Mediation is generally cheaper than negotiating via solicitors or at court and the process is less confrontational than the court process, improving the chances of co-operation in the longer term. It provides an opportunity to resolve matters in a positive and constructive way by helping to improve communication between family members. The process is less stressful and tends to be quicker that dealing with disputes via your solicitor and the courts.

What is involved?

First meetings are usually for each party alone unless you specifically wish to commence with a joint meeting. The initial session allows you to talk through the situation and also for us to explain he mediation process and answer any queries you may have.

If both parties agree to go ahead with mediation, a joint session is arranged. These are usually for 1 – 11/2 hours. The number of these sessions will depend on the nature of the matters you wish to discuss.

How much does it cost?

At the initial session we will assess whether you are eligible for legal aid. If you are eligible and have supplied us with all the relevant documents to confirm this, mediation will be provided free of charge.

You can check if you are eligible for legal aid by clicking here.

The fees for mediation are significantly lower than solicitors fees. Charges are on a sessional basis and are payable on the day of each meeting.