Family mediation is a process in which those involved in family breakdown, whether or not they are a couple or other family members, appoint an impartial third person to assist them to better communicate with one another and reach their own agreed and informed decisions concerning some, or all, of the issues relating to separation, divorce, children, finance or property by negotiation (Family Mediation Council).
At Family Law Associates, we offer two models of mediation.
We offer the more traditional model where the two clients come to a series of meetings (usually lasting between 1 – 2 hours) to discuss matters with the assistance of a mediator. Over the course of a few meetings, the clients are guided towards outcomes that work for their family. Documentation is drawn up once those outcomes have been reached, so that the clients can take them to their own solicitors to convert the proposed outcomes into legally binding agreements.
We also offer a hybrid model of mediation, which takes elements of the civil mediation model. In the hybrid model, the clients’ solicitors can take a more active role and may attend meetings together with their clients. There is often one main meeting in the hybrid model, which can last for a full day, and at which a final resolution is aimed for. The clients have the benefit of legal advice as their solicitors can be present (although this is not mandatory) and this can therefore be an efficient and speedy way to find solutions.