Legal advice from Jennifer Roulston, Family Partner at FDR Law in Warrington
Q: What is a Family Mediator, and how will I benefit from having a mediator in my case?
A: When a relationship breaks down, it can make communication between both parties challenging and therefore coming to a mutual decision about children and assets becomes a difficult and frustrating situation.
A mediator is an independent and neutral facilitator who assists parties in finding a solution they agree on. As there is normally just one mediator, they will have a clear idea of the feelings and concerns of those involved. The mediator will gather all relevant information and using their knowledge and experience, will try to draw the two sides together in the hope of reaching a sensible, fair and practical agreement that is acceptable to both the parties.
It is found that avoiding a Court route is far better for a family long term, as the mediator can help to go through the options and guide the parties into a position that will make a solution that will work for their family in the long run.
Solving issues between the parties through mediation can be much faster than achieving an outcome through the court process. This is because mediation focuses on finding solutions to the issues that the parties need resolving, whereas The Court process is lengthy. The time it can take for proceedings to conclude can create further uncertainty and instability for parties and their children.
Mediation can also be a cheaper alternative, meaning that the parties are placed in a better financial position post-separation than if the matter had been litigated.
I am a trained mediator and have over 17 years of specialising in Family Law, which means that I have seen most things that can happen in a case and I've seen most circumstances. I do believe that mediation has helped my clients through more challenging cases.