UK Family Law: Myth Busting Mediation

Having been a mediator for more than 20 years, I am an advocate of the process and fully support the Family Mediation Week initiative. Whilst in some cases it may be unavoidable to go to Court to resolve your dispute, I would suggest taking time to reflect on the following points and consider mediation as a potential option:

  1. A neutral facilitator

    In mediation, you meet with a mediator or 'neutral facilitator' who helps you deal with your dispute. This not only enables access to professional help and guidance, but also the opportunity to input and discuss how you would like to handle your matter.

  2. Mediation is confidential

    Any discussions had during mediation are 'without prejudice' and will not be used in Court proceedings. This means it is possible to have an open and frank discussion about potential settlement options in the context of mediation, without fear of future disclosure. Also, there is no fear of press reporting any of the issues discussed, which can be particularly important for couples with celebrity status.

  3. Holding to the terms

    If you have mediated your agreement, and therefore contributed towards the determination of the dispute, you and your partner are more likely to hold the terms of the agreement

  4. Keeping communication open

    Mediation often helps keep lines of communication open. In my experience, one of the most common aspirations voiced by couples is that they would like to remain friends and separate constructively. This is truly achievable through mediation.

  5. Mediation can save you money

    Mediation is much cheaper than litigation. In mediation, you are effectively paying for one mediator to assist with your case. Although it is important to consider having independent legal advice regarding the outcome in mediation before any Court Order is made, this is a much more cost effective process than taking your dispute to Court.

  6. You can deal with multiple issues at once

    A mediator can often deal with a number of issues in one meeting, e.g. financial issues and children matters. In Court, this is likely to...

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