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What is the Role of a Family Mediator?

A family mediator is an impartial third party who helps married & unmarried couples, parents, grandparents, step-parents and young people to discuss their issues openly and make informed decisions on how they are going to resolve and/or manage these issues going forward.

If you are splitting up with your partner or are getting a divorce and you are finding it difficult to communicate and make arrangements for the future a Family Mediator can help to sort things out in a more amicable way, helping you to reach decisions which will provide the best solution for your children and for the whole family.

A family mediator is trained to work out if mediation is going to be the right way forward for you and your family, and this will depend on individual circumstances. Some cases are not suitable for mediation, for example in situations where domestic violence or child abuse is involved, bankruptcy or being unable to locate your ex-partner, and in these situations you can take your case straight to court without mediation. You will however need to show the Judge you’ve considered it by completing the relevant section of the C100 Form.

There are considerable benefits to using a Family Mediator:

  • Less Stressful
  • Gives you an opportunity to talk things through
  • Lower cost than going to Court
  • Practical Solutions
  • Confidential
  • Focus on children’s needs
  • You have more say than you will have in Court where a Judge decides
  • Encourages positive communication between parties

Mediation can be an alternative to Court, but if you decide you want to file proceedings at Court, you are required to demonstrate that you have considered mediation first and you can do this by attending a MIAM session (Mediation and Information Assessment Meeting) where you will discuss mediation and whether it will work for you. 

At Watson Thomas Solicitors, our Resolution-trained family mediators are also solicitors, which means they have the expertise and experience to guide you both through the mediation sessions, focusing on what the outcome may be, and whether the matter is to be heard in Court. We encourage the use of non-confrontational methods of mediation with a practical and solution-focused approach as this achieves the best results and allows for resolution to take place.

For further information on the mediation services provided by Watson Thomas Solicitors, please visit www.watson-thomas.co.uk/mediation-services/mediation or call 01252 622422 (Fleet) or 01483 320114 (Guildford).