If you and your partner/spouse separate, you will have to sort out many legal issues. You will most often have to deal with issues such as parenting, arrangements for the children, financial support, equalization and division of family property.
What is Mediation?
Mediation is an alternative dispute process used to settle disagreements outside of the court system. Here at AP Lawyers, mediation is conducted by an independent neutral person, called a “Mediator.” The Mediator is also a senior lawyer with extensive family law experience and is qualified and trained to help you and your spouse/partner resolve your differences on legal issues.
Mediation can assist parties in resolving family law issues such as parenting arrangements (child custody and access), child support, financial support, equalization, division of property etc. You can mediate before going to court or anytime during the court process.
There are 2 types of Mediation:
1. Open Mediation – at the conclusion of mediation, mediator files or prepares a full report and is free to include anything relevant to the matter; evidence of anything said or of any admission or communication made in the course of the sessions is admissible in a proceeding whether clients consent or not.
2. Closed Mediation – at the conclusion of mediation, mediator files or prepares a report that either sets out the agreement reached by the clients or states only that they did not reach agreement on the matter; evidence of anything said or any admission or communication made in the course of the mediation is not admissible in any proceeding except with the consent of both parties.
What is the Mediators role?
- To listen to both parties and try to help them reach their own agreement;
- The mediator does not, should not, and cannot impose an agreement, decide an issue, or provide legal advice;
- Mediator reports back to the lawyers (if parties already retained one), preferably in a memorandum of understanding, and the lawyers draft and revise the separation agreement, and ensure each party signs; or
- Where appropriate, draft a Separation Agreement for the parties to obtain independent legal advice
Is Mediation for you?
The goal of mediation is to reach an agreement that works for both parties. For mediation to work and be a suitable option for you and your spouse/partner, you must:
- Feel comfortable and safe to meet and speak to the other person; and
- Be willing and open to try and reach a solution/ resolution with the other person.
Benefits of choosing Mediation
Mediation for family law disputes has many benefits which include:
- Preserving your family relationship by encouraging settlement, open communication, development of understanding and reducing the conflict between the parties;
- Agreement must be consensual between both parties to be binding;
- It is a confidential and non-judgmental process;
- Allows parties to have more control over the process and final outcomes;
- Allows for flexibility and creativity in resolving disputes and crafting an agreement that works for both parties and their children;
- More relaxed and comforting setting than a court room;
- It is more cost effective, more efficient, less formal, less stressful/ overwhelming than through the court process.
Why choose AP Lawyers?
Here at AP Lawyers our mediators have extensive skills and knowledge in both mediating and litigating family law issues regardless of the simplicity or complexity of your matter.This puts us in the best position to mediate your issues.We can assist you in crafting an agreement that works for both parties. In addition, we strive to ensure our clients feel comfortable, listened to and supported throughout this process.
Participating in Mediation here at AP Lawyers allows you and our partner to reach a settlement on your matter without the stress of litigation or conflict. Mediation allows for open communication between the parties, to reach a resolution in a more efficient and effective manner. To learn more about Mediation at AP Lawyers, call today for more information or to book a consultation and see if Mediation is right for you!