Family Mediation Week – How can mediation help separating couples?
Posted on January 23rd 2024
The Family Department at Oliver and Co Solicitors try to ensure that every family matter is dealt with in an amicable and non-confrontational way, if it is at all possible.
We believe that everyone should explore and understand the benefits of mediation as an alternative to litigation before they embark upon the legal process. But what is mediation and how can it help separating couples?
Mediator aims to help a couple work together
A Mediator is independent and does not give advice, as a Solicitor would, or tell either person what they should do, as a Judge might. The Mediator aims to help a couple work together, empowering them to make their own decisions regarding divorce or separation, finances arising from the divorce, child arrangements or any other issue that they wish to discuss. If it is felt to be appropriate, children over the age of ten can also become involved in mediation to express their own wishes and feelings. Mediation can help parents clearly understand the child’s perspective at a time when they are often not felt heard.
Mediation is voluntary, confidential (subject to some exceptions) and takes place in an environment which feels safe to explore pressing issues and options in general, to ensure that any resolution is tailor-made.
Mediation is not legally binding
If a resolution is achieved in mediation, it will not be legally binding, but it is a way to clarify the arrangements and is hopefully something that both are happy with and will implement between themselves. A Family Law Solicitor can then draw up a Consent Order for the court to consider, incorporating all terms reached in mediation. This is a much more cost-effective approach than court proceedings.
Family Mediation Week is an opportunity to learn more
Between the 22nd and 26th of January 2024, the Family Mediation Council are hosting helpful seminars for professionals, lawyers, and the general public during Family Mediation Week, such as “How family mediation can work when dealing with high conflict personalities” and “A conversation with former BBC News Presenter Joanna Gosling who has changed career to become a family mediator”.
Family Mediation Week provides an opportunity to understand more about family mediation and its benefits for separating families. By informing people about the benefits of mediation and encouraging separating couples to think about mediation, it will help them to take control, make decisions together and build a positive future for their family.
We would encourage anyone who is experiencing issues within a relationship, in respect of financial matters, or in respect of their children to explore what help is available to them.
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