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What is “family mediation”?
Family mediation is a way of resolving disputes between couples (and families) and helps people to look for their own solutions to their disputes using the negotiating skills of a third party.
Why choose mediation?
The government have announced that divorcing or separating couples will be referred to mediation, from 6th April 2011, to sort out most disputes before they are allowed to use the courts.
The cost of family breakdown is not merely financial. Divorce is often ranked as more stressful than bereavement or redundancy and can be devastating for both the couple and those closest to them; grandparents, extended family and importantly children. Mediation can offer a quicker, less stressful and more amiciable alternative to going through the courts, as well as potentially costing a lot less money.
A typical divorce settlement can take more than a year to negotiate, during which time family finances are drained to pay for two homes, twice the household expenses and two sets of lawyers’ fees. Mediation is a more cost-effective and speedy way to resolve family issues and is sympathetic to the highly-charged emotional dynamic that more often than not arises when couples separate or divorce.
The Justice Minister Jonathan Djanogly said mediation was "a quicker, cheaper and more amicable alternative" to the over-worked family courts, and "gives people the opportunity to take their own futures in their own hands".
What happens during mediation?
During mediation, both parties explain their concerns and needs to each other in the presence of a qualified family mediator. Our mediators are impartial – they are not on anyone’s side. They are there to help both parties – unlike a solicitor who works for one party in each case. Sometimes, the mediator will suggest a way of solving a problem to assist in reaching an agreement acceptable to both – but the mediator will never tell either party what to do.
TWP Mediation can help you decide:-
· Whether to divorce and, if so, on what grounds
· With whom the children will live
· How to manage the shared responsibility of caring for the children
· How to deal with parenting issues
· What will happen to the family home
· How to decide “who has what”
· How to arrange financial support for dependent family members
TWP mediators can give information about the law but cannot give legal advice and assistance. We recommend that you go and see a solicitor at the end of mediation when an agreement has been reached so that you are reassured that whatever is agreed is fair to you legally. A family solicitor can also help you before and in-between mediation sessions if you feel that formal legal advice would be helpful.
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