Whether you are experiencing the breakdown of a relationship or a marriage, family mediators can help you and your family through this difficult time.
Mediators help individuals produce a mutual agreement that will benefit both individuals. It is designed to help people focus on the future, once their separation has been finalised.
Couples find family mediation extremely comforting as mediators are completely impartial and unbiased. Instead of telling you what is right for you, mediators work with you to reduce any stress or conflict, assisting you to make your own decision. Individuals will be given the same amount of time to work through their stresses and problems. A mediator will only intervene if they feel any children’s needs or feelings are not being considered.
Mediation usually occurs in three stages; the initial meeting, working progress meetings and a final proposal meeting.
In the initial meeting you and your partner will meet with a mediator and discuss any issues you wish to resolve during the process. Your mediator may advise you to seek other help during this period, including financial or child support. You can see a lawyer at any time during the mediation process. At this initial stage, you will also have to agree on times and dates when you both are willing to attend meetings. Compromise is a large part of mediation, so it’s beneficial to start with an agreement on meeting times.
During the sessions you will work through your issues with the mediator and try to find solutions that suit both of you. Talk about what your main concerns are and what you fear the most. Mediators will assist you during your own personal solutions to the issues you raise. Within the meetings you will both be working on a Mediation Summary, which is legal document stating what you each agree to stick to after your separation.
Once you have finalised the proposals which you both find acceptable, a copy will be sent to each of the party’s lawyers. If your proposals are approved by your lawyers, they will convert the proposals into a legal binding contract.
The first step towards family mediation will be contacting a solicitor who will set the ball rolling. Your solicitor will ask you and your partner to attend the initial meeting where you will meet your mediator. They will explain the whole process to you, giving you time to ask any questions or raise any queries. During this meeting, it will allow you and your partner to decide whether mediation is the right path for you.
If you do decide to go-ahead with the mediation process, you will attend a number of these sessions until you complete your Mediation Summary.
If you would like more information on family mediation, contact family law solicitors – Burt Brill and Cardens.