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Mediation Week 2024

View profile for Gail Strange
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We are presently in the middle of Mediation Week, which this year runs from 22 to 26 January 2024. 

This is an annual event where the benefits of Family Mediation are spotlighted and aims to guide more separated couples towards mediation as a way of trying to resolve any issues, taking control of their circumstances, and making decisions together for their family’s future.

Mediation has been around for over 30 years and there is still some confusion with what it can offer and what its purpose is in family issues. 

Mediation is available for separating partners to discuss in an open, non-judgmental and safe environment, guided by a mediator who has received specialised training and who is aware of both the legal and emotional issues that separation can entail.  It is not there to encourage parties to reconcile but more to make their separation less painful and to come out of a relationship with a resolution which they have had some input into.

Although mediation is not suitable for all cases, it is a requirement that all couples must have attended mediation before they can start court proceedings.  There are exceptions, as there are to any rule, particularly if the issue is urgent or there is evidence of domestic abuse, but you can expect to have to attend mediation if you cannot resolve issues yourselves and need to ask for the court’s involvement.  If court proceedings are issued without either party having attempted mediation you can expect a judge to delay the proceedings until you have. 

The Family Mediation Council is running public events where you can register to attend webinars or watch videos. 

Mediation Week is supported by Resolution, an organisation of family lawyers.  Resolution members recognise that looking for solutions rather than conflict leads to more families managing their affairs after separation in a more constructive and positive way, saving both money and emotional stress at what is already a difficult time.

Many mediators will include children in the mediation process, giving voice to their wishes and feelings in an age-appropriate way.  Again, this can lead to better and more sustainable arrangements post-separation.

If you are considering attending mediation, you may want to take some legal advice before the sessions start and continue to receive legal support and advice during the process itself.  If you reach a financial agreement, you should always take legal advice on how to ensure the agreement is binding and enforceable.

Speak to one of our experienced Family Law Team at Biscoes to find out more and to get the support and advice you need. Call them on 023 9266 0261 or email