If you are in the middle of a separation or divorce, it is difficult to know where to begin. Mediation is an extremely flexible way of dealing with all issues arising from relationship breakdowns including: contact with children; finances; and property matters, eliminating the need for stressful, expensive Court hearings and keeping legal costs to a minimum. Mediation also empowers you both to keep control of all matters between yourselves.
Contrary to some beliefs, mediation is not a form of marriage guidance and neither is it counselling, although such services may be recommended to you by a mediator if considered to be appropriate. It is, at its simplest, a confidential way of assisting you to work out your problems together so that you decide how to proceed in an informed way. If children are involved, then contact matters can be fully explored keeping in mind what is best for the children and, as parents, you generally know what is best for your own children. All options can be looked at and discussed and the mediator will assist with reality-checking each option to see how each could work in practice.
With property and financial matters, similar disclosure is required from you as would be required by a solicitor or the Court. This is taken seriously within mediation to ensure that both parties are negotiating on a level playing field. It is only once you are both aware of what is in the “pot” that you can really begin to negotiate on finances. When you are ready to take legal advice, this will be on a fully prepared and informed basis.
With less for opportunity for misunderstandings in communication, this can help to reduce much of the conflict that can lead to litigation.
For a less stressful and faster way of dealing with your issues, consider mediation first.