Mediation is a confidential and voluntary process intended to assist and consider issues between parties. Anyone can attend mediation (although the focus here is on family relationships, so this can include, unmarried families, married families alike). Our Farnham based Family lawyers are able to assist with mediation.
Often parties may need to consider the following:-
- Living arrangements for children – mediation can help explore issues relating to children, for example, where a child/children might live (formally referred to as Residence) or when they should spend time with their parents, siblings and wider family (formerly referred to as Contact);
- Financial matters and arrangements – mediation can help you consider and explore financial issues that might arise either prior to or as a family are separating (by reference to both unmarried and married families);
- Co-habitation and Pre-Nuptial Agreements – mediation can also positively help parties who are or will be living together to look at their future financial obligations and commitments to the other;
- The death of a loved one – mediation can help where there may be a dispute following the death of loved one.
The mediation process involves a Mediator who must be specifically trained and neutral throughout the process, whose main intention is to assist the parties to explore options regarding any issues that may be in dispute. In some cases, it may also be sensible to consider co-mediation as well (for example, where there are a number of different issues that need consideration) but the same mediation principles will still apply.
If the parties involved in the mediation process are able to make proposals to the other and then form an agreement through the Mediation process it is possible to form a document known as a Memorandum of Understanding that is considered fair and acceptable to all concerned, and the intention would be to avoid involving Court intervention if at all possible.
Both parties can then jointly to apply to court for the arrangements to be formalised, for example into a Minute of Consent Order or Child Arrangement Orders. This ensures that any proposals/agreements reached during the mediation process are legally binding
Either person can choose to leave the mediation process at any point.
For more information please contact us online or by phone on 01252 733770.