At Hall Brown we are dedicated to helping clients resolve disputes as amicably as possible. Whilst we accept that in some circumstances it may be appropriate for parties to communicate via lawyers, we recognise that in many cases issues can be resolved by giving individuals the opportunity to sit down together to discuss their concerns and generate options to resolve matters. In such circumstances mediation can be an invaluable tool to help such discussions result in realistic and workable solutions which enable the parties to move forward with their independent lives.
As an experienced family lawyer, our in-house mediator Judith Klyne is able to work with parties to help them resolve disputes and reach agreements relating to issues surrounding divorce, finances and children. In her capacity as a mediator, Judith will not provide parties with legal advice, and will instead support them to discuss their issues directly, by providing the space and structure to enable such conversations to take place.
Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting
In order to move forward with mediation, each client must attend an individual Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting (MIAM), during which Judith will provide them with details of the mediation process. Judith will also listen to the issues that each party would like to try and resolve during the sessions, before considering whether mediation would be an appropriate method of dispute resolution.
*Please note that in order to issue court proceedings it is essential to attend a MIAM in advance of doing so (unless a specific exemption applies). As Judith is a trained mediator working towards accreditation she does not accept cases where a party has made the decision to apply to court, and is simply attending a MIAM in order to move forward in this regard. Instead, she works with clients who have a genuine interest in resolving matters via the mediation process.
In order to be able to discuss potential financial settlement options, parties must undergo the process of financial disclosure. This will enable the individuals to have a clear understanding of what assets need to be dealt with, as well as allowing them to generate ideas regarding the most appropriate way to distribute them.
To facilitate the above requirement, parties will have the opportunity to complete and exchange their respective disclosure packs in advance of their first joint meeting, so that the time in the session can be utilised effectively. Parties may wish to obtain independent legal advice with a solicitor, so that they have a clear understanding of their respective positions during discussions in mediation.
Separating parties with children may wish to use mediation to reach an agreement regarding arrangements for where the children will live and how they will split their time. In addition to the wider issues, mediation can also be used to resolve smaller or more specific issues such as which school their children should go to, conflicting beliefs regarding religion or name changes. Mediation can be used as a space for parties to discuss any such matters, so that they can co-parent in as cordial and effective manner as possible, putting the interests of the children first.
Upon reaching a workable agreement, Judith will draft the documents which set out the details of the same and the rationale behind it. In cases where finances have been resolved, a Financial Statement will also be prepared, confirming the details of the finances which have been disclosed during the discussions.
Given that any agreements reached in mediation are without prejudice, in order to make them legally binding the parties will need to instruct solicitors to draft a Consent Order. This can then be lodged at court for approval by a judge.
- Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting (MIAM): £120 & VAT
- Mediation Session: £350 & VAT per session
Arranging an appointment
To find out more about our mediation service please contact Catherine Matthews on 0161 804 7019 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org