Frequently asked questions

1. What issues can I mediate?

You may mediate any issue you both agree needs discussing including:

a) Who will petition for divorce and on what grounds.
b) What and when to tell the children.
c) How to share the assets and the liabilities such as the family home, pensions, credit card debts and   outstanding loans.
d) What child support should be paid.
e) What spousal support should be paid.
f) What are the arrangements for the children.
g) Where should the children spend their holidays including any special religious events like Christmas

2. Do I need a solicitor?

We do advise that during mediation you consult a solicitor. They will advise you on what you may expect if your case goes to court. This helps you negotiate your settlement and provides valuable input to allow you to make informed decisions. The mediator will advise you when seeing a solicitor may be of help.


3. Can I get Legal Aid for mediation?

You may be entitled to legal aid for mediation. The below government website will allow you to check if you are eligible for free mediation and find you a service that offers this work in your area.
https://www.gov.uk/legal-aid


4. What is the divorce process and can you handle my divorce for me?

The divorce process in England and Wales is fully explained in the website below. This government website will take you, step by step, through the stages and documents you require. During mediation we do not fill in the relevant forms. You will need to do this yourself or employ a solicitor to do this. You may download these documents from the website.

https://www.gov.uk/divorce

Mediation will allow you to sort out any issues you and your ex-partner have to be able to submit your own divorce papers. Where you need to submit extra orders, for example for Spousal Support, we can provide a solicitor who can take your final mediated agreements and turn them in to the relevant court documents.


5. Is mediation for me?

Mediation is based on several strongly held beliefs:

  1. You know what is best for you.
  2. You know what is best for your children.
  3. You know what you consider to be fair.
  4. You have children and you want their welfare and well-being to underpin your future relationship with your ex-partner. You would like to be able to discuss their needs together in the future.

Mediation is suitable for you if you can take control of the decisions that you need to make.

The mediator will steer you through your conflict and ensure you can have the means to make your decisions, but they will not provide you with the answers as to what is fair, what should happen and what you should do. The mediator is independent and will not be able to give either of you advice.

During mediation a solicitor can advise you of your rights and what may happen if you went to court, but you need to be able to provide these answers in the mediation room on your own.

Mediation does not provide a place to explore your past relationship. It provides the place for you to plan your future life apart - so you may get on with that life.


6. What do I need to mediate?

In order to mediate both you and your ex-partner must be Willing To Mediate. 

Once mediation has started, you may need a range of information to allow you to make informed decisions. All your information needs will be discussed during the mediation. The mediator can signpost you to many people who will be able to help you gather the information you need – such as Estate Agents, Financial Advisors, Contact Centres etc. Each mediation session will provide you with a document showing all the information required for the next session. You do not need to bring any information to your first meeting – the Mediation and Information Assessment Meeting (MIAM).


7. What is a C100, Form A and FM1 form and can you provide it?

The government wishes all parties involved in divorce and separation and/or child contact arrangements to understand what mediation is and whether it can be suitable for them.

Any party who wishes to pursue family matters through the court must have a form signed by a suitably qualified mediator, a C100 for children matters and Form A for financial matters, to show they have taken part in this process.

This form can be signed if your ex-partner is not prepared to mediate or, you attend a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting (MIAM) to understand what mediation can offer.

Providing a signed copy of the form is part of our service.


8. Do we have to sit in the same room in mediation?

Often couples find the thought of sitting in the same room too stressful or difficult. There is the option of sitting in separate rooms and the mediator 'shuttles' between you.  This can often be helpful if there are allegations or domestic violence.


9. Will the mediator provide advice?

A mediator is completely impartial. Their role is to provide information, facilitate your discussions and manage the process in an even handed way.   Mediators do not provide advice, you will be expected to gain legal or financial advice throughout the process of mediation. to make sure any discussions or agreements are enforceable and something a court would order.


10. Is mediation legally binding?

The discussions and any agreements you achieve in mediation are legally privileged to give you the opportunity to explore options without being held to them or evidence used in court. If you reach agreement we provide you with documentation to take to a solicitor.