An Introduction to Family Mediation
This information page explains a little of what family mediation is and a little about the role of the mediator.
About Family Mediation
Family mediation is about both partners of a relationship (that has ended or may be ending) getting together with an independent mediator to work out future arrangements for themselves and any children.
Mediation is voluntary and it is essential for both partners to agree to participate in mediation. Each will be asked to sign an agreement to mediate and agree to commit to the process.
Mediation is fair to both clients
Mediators work in an impartial way; it is important that mediators don’t take sides or make judgements. Initially the mediator will speak to each client separately to ensure that they are entering into the process of t heir own free will and there are no contraindications to the mediation process.
Issues suitable for mediation
Mediation is suitable for all family matters between family members such as those who are parents, grandparents seeing grandchildren, elderly parents and their care needs, those disputing wills, displaced teenagers and their families.
Divorce and separation
In divorce and separation, mediation helps clients to look to the future. In the mediation we consider all issues, whether relating to arrangements for children, property and/or finance or any other issues you want to bring into mediation. Mediators don’t offer counselling or therapy.
Mediator Dos and Donts
Mediators can give information on legal issues between clients (for example about the legal process of divorce) sufficient to help them to understand what options are likely to be available. Mediators do not tell clients what to do or what is in their best interests but can help them negotiate an outcome that they feel is best for them. Mediators always suggest that agreements are considered by each client’s solicitors to ensure that they are in the individual’s best interests.
Children in mediation
When there are children in the family, the mediation will put their needs at the centre of any proposals. If both parents agree, the mediator can see the child or children privately to talk about what they want from their parents and what their needs are. This is significant information in the mediation but the decision – making remains the parents alone. The mediator carrying out the consultation directly with the child or children has undertaken a specialist training course and has Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks.
Reasons not to mediate
If there is any reason why mediation might not be possible (eg. issues or threats of violence between you, or where there are concerns regarding the protection of your child/ren) it is still worth meeting with the mediator as we can consider what options might be available for you.
Call for a no obligation chat about whether mediation is right for you.