When a relationship breaks down, emotions often run high, yet there are usually a number of important decisions to be made regarding arrangements for the future.
Talking face-to-face with your former partner may be the quickest and most inexpensive way to resolve your issues. However, quite understandably, many find this a daunting prospect. That is where the BLB Family Mediation Service can help.
“I like to say thank you for all the help you have given me personally and at a very difficult time. I am so glad that we decided to use the mediation process and chose you as our mediator. You input has been invaluable.” JH, January 2018
Our Resolution-trained Mediator will assist you and your former partner to talk to one another in a safe environment, to focus on what really matters to each of you and to reach the best solutions for you and your family. Our Mediator is also a practising Family Solicitor and will ensure that any proposals you arrive at through Mediation can be made into a legally binding agreement should you wish.
Mediation Referral Form
To save or download our referral form, please click here.
Some Mediation providers advertise their fees on a per person basis and some do not. To enable you to make a proper comparison between our charges and those of other providers we have set out our fees on various bases which you can view here.
Commonly asked questions are:
- What is Family Mediation?
- Why choose Family Mediation?
- What is a Resolution-trained Family Mediator?
- How much does Family Mediation cost?
- Will I still need a Solicitor?
- Will Family Mediation help me?
- What is a MIAM?
What is Family Mediation?
Family Mediation is a process whereby a specially trained Family Mediator helps you, as a separating couple, to talk things through, so you can settle on a proposal for future arrangements for your children, finances or any other issues that arise following your separation. The Family Mediator then draws up the proposal into a Summary, which each of you can take to your own Solicitors.
A Family Mediator is always impartial and works on behalf of both of you equally, irrespective of which of you makes the initial enquiry. The Mediator does not offer advice that influences the decisions of either of you, but gives general information about the legal aspects of relationship breakdown and assists a couple to reach workable solutions.
Why choose Mediation?
The main reasons that people choose to mediate are that:
- It gives you more control over the outcome rather than having one imposed on you by the court;
- The costs are usually considerably less than using solicitors as intermediaries;
- It helps you to resolve issues much more quickly, at a pace to suit you;
- It reduces tension and hostility, which is beneficial to any children who can see that their parents are working together to resolve their issues.
What is a Resolution-trained Mediator?
Our Mediator was trained by Resolution, a national body of family solicitors, and is also a practicing Family Solicitor. As such, she is an expert in Family Law and therefore best placed to assist you to reach solutions that are likely to be accepted as workable when the time comes to convert them into a legally binding agreement by your own Solicitor.
How much does it cost?
Our Mediator’s fees are competitive at £120 plus VAT per person per hour for Mediation and any necessary follow-up paperwork.
On average a couple will need three or four Mediation sessions (each session is 1½ hours, with up to 1 hour follow-up paperwork between sessions) in order to exchange information, discuss options and reach a proposal, or a set of proposals, to resolve the issues between them. Then the Mediator will take an additional 2-3 hours at the conclusion of the process to prepare a Financial Statement of your respective financial circumstances and a comprehensive Memorandum of Understanding summarising your discussions, the outcome and your proposals.
The cost of attending Mediation is usually considerably lower than the cost of the more traditional route, where each person uses their own solicitor to get to a comparable point, namely to exchange information, engage in negotiations and reach an agreement.
Will I still need a Solicitor?
Mediators do not give legal advice and do not represent individuals. They are there to help both of you work out a plan for the future. Once you and your former partner have finalised a proposal through Mediation, you should then discuss it with your own Solicitors, who can, if desired, make it into a legally binding agreement. Either of you can consult your own Solicitor during any stage of the Mediation process should you wish to do so.
Will Family Mediation help me?
Mediation is not for everyone, nor is it a soft option. To enable you to find out more about the mediation process, we offer a 30-minute Introductory Mediation Meeting with our Solicitor Mediator, which you will need to attend separately rather than together as a couple. The purpose of this meeting is to gather details about your circumstances and assess with you whether Mediation would be helpful in your case. If you already have a Solicitor, they can provide us with basic information about your situation in advance of your meeting by completing our referral form. Alternatively, you can contact us directly.
Our referral form is available here.
What is a MIAM?
A MIAM is a “Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting”. Our Family Mediator has received authorisation from the Mediation Council to conduct these meetings. We charge a fee of £100 plus VAT for the meeting itself, which includes the provision of a mediator’s certificate, should you require one.