What is Mediation?

Mediation is a process where two people can meet in a safe neutral place to talk about and negotiate any issues, such as childcare arrangements or financial disputes, following on from their separation or divorce. Mediation is a cheaper, quicker and less stressful option than attending court.

We can help you with a variety of issues, such as:

  • Arrangements for the children including:
    • Time spent with each parent
    • Co-parenting
    • Special occasions, such as holidays, Christmas and birthdays. 
    • School pick-ups and drop offs
    • Introducing a new partner into your child's life
  • Issues around the property and finance including:
    • What happens to the house we shared?
    • What about our savings and other assets?
    • What about our debts?
    • What about our pensions?

No matter how big or small you think an issue may be, we want to help you and your family move on.

We start the process with you or or someone like a solicitor getting in touch. We take a few details, and why you would like to try mediation.

Our team will team book you in for what we call a MIAM (Mediation Information and Assessment MeetingThis meeting will just be between you and the mediator, and can take place face-to-face or online via Zoom. This session is for the mediator to gather some more information about you situation and to decide whether mediation would be suitable or now.

If mediation is deem suitable and both parties would like to go ahead, we then book you in for joint mediation sessions.

In these meetings, you and your ex-partner (or other relevant party) would meet to discuss any issues that have occured post-separation or divorce. For example, this could be regarding childcare arrangements or finances.

Meetings usually last an hour each. We can speak to children as part of mediation process, if you and your child agree to it.

At the start of the process, each party is invited to attend a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting. This meeting is for you on your own, your ex partner will not be there. You will have the opportunity to discuss the issues, this will give the mediator a better understanding of situation. The mediator will explain the mediation process and what you can expect.

Due to changes in legislation, it is compulsory for anyone to first attend a MIAM with a qualified mediator before beginning court proceedings. If mediation is unsuitable in your case, the mediator will be able to complete the documentation to enable you to begin court proceedings.

You can learn more about what a MIAM is here.

No, and mediators can’t give legal advice. You should always seek independent legal advice before entering into any legally binding agreement.

At the end of the mediation process your mediator will prepare a written Memorandum of Understanding which outlines all of the details you have agreed to. For financial matters, this can be then presented to your solicitors who can then draft an agreement to make the arrangements legally binding. This will avoid the need for a judge to make a decision and the costly court process.

In child contact arrangements, research has shown that arrangements that have been negotiated by the parents are far more likely to work than arrangements imposed on them by a Judge.

Yes, Legal Aid is available for Mediation. When booking in your MIAM, our team can give you further guidance on what we can offer.

As long as either you or your former partner is eligible, the person who isn’t will have their assessment appointment (MIAM) fully funded and their mediation partially funded.

You can learn more about the cost of mediation here