What is Family Mediation?

Family mediation is a voluntary process where people with issues in their families, such as divorce or separation, meet with a trained mediator who helps them discuss their concerns. The mediator is neutral and impartial and can help the parties find a way forward that is suitable for their needs and circumstances. Mediation can take place at any stage of the dispute and can be offered to parties even when a case is going through court.

Family Mediation is a good option for those who want to resolve their dispute without the time, stress and cost of litigation. However, it’s important to note that mediation is not a substitute for legal advice. If you are going through a divorce, it’s important to have a family law attorney in your corner to ensure that you understand the process and can craft a legal solution that’s in line with your best interests.

The mediation process may involve joint sessions or private sessions (called caucuses). Mediators often focus on the legal aspects of the case, but solutions can also include non-legal issues such as parenting, communication and co-operation.

The sessions can be held face to face, online or in separate rooms and can include your lawyers where appropriate. It’s not unusual for families who start in a state of extreme tension to end the session reminiscing about happy family memories. It’s also not uncommon for parents to come out of mediation with an agreement that includes logistical solutions, such as custody schedules and rules about respectful future interactions.

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