Mediation

Resolving the issues that arise from your relationship breakdown has traditionally been achieved by using a Court managed adversarial process that often leaves one Party bitter and disillusioned with the outcome. Accordingly, since April 6th 2011 if you need a Court Order relating to financial matters or the children of the family you will be expected, before making your Application to the Court, to have followed the steps set out in a Protocol issued by the Department of Justice.

As a potential Applicant for a Court Order you will be required to consider with a Mediator whether your dispute may be capable of being resolved through Alternative Dispute Resolution processes.

This takes place at a “MIAM” – a Mediation Information Assessment Meeting.

What is the Purpose of the Meeting?

You will have explained to you what Mediation is and how it works and be given guidance on other means of resolving the breakdown of your relationship including Collaborative Law.

You should attend this Meeting with your Partner unless there is a history of domestic violence as otherwise the Mediator will have to see you both separately

How much will it cost?

The cost is likely to be in the region of £140.00 but Legal Aid is available for Mediation in certain circumstances.

When will a MIAM not be required?

  • when a Mediator considers a Meeting is not appropriate
  • when there is a history of domestic abuse
  • where one of the Parties has been made bankrupt
  • when an urgent Application to the Court is needed
  • where there are child protection issues

Mediation – General Issues

you can engage in Mediation with or without a Lawyer advising you
if you do not have a Lawyer advising you the Mediator will prepare a document setting out the terms of any agreement that has been reached but this will need to be incorporated into a legally binding agreement or Court Order
Mediation can take place over several Sessions or over a full day when the aim is to resolve everything that day
the Mediator will not take sides and will not make decisions for you
you can choose Meditation whether you have started Court Proceedings or not
the Mediator has to remain impartial and so, you will still need separate legal advice to help you both reach informed decisions about your future
You will receive clear advice from us as to all of the options available to you with a view to achieving the best possible outcome for you. Mediation is not the best option for everyone but you can rely on us to listen to your views and to then guide you through the process protecting your position at every step of the way.

Links

www.familymediationcouncil.org.uk