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Family Dispute Resolution Week 25th - 29th November 2013

Family Mediation Network to offer a series of presentations introducing mediation as an alternative to court for separating or divorcing couples –

Family Mediation Network (FMN) is pleased to announce a series of presentations to help organisations and employers understand the benefits of mediation for those going through divorce.

The initiative is part of Family Dispute Resolution Week from 25th – 29th November, coordinated by national organisation Resolution.

FMN is a group of experienced family lawyers providing practical guidance to couples to help them to make informed choices at a time of relationship breakdown.

Rebekah Gershuny of Collins Solicitors, and a co-founder of FMN, commented: “There remains a general lack of awareness among the public of the alternatives to court proceedings to resolve disputes arising when family relationships break down. Many believe that the only option is to apply to the courts.

In reality, however, in most cases mediation is a better way of resolving family disputes in a more cost effective and comparatively stress-free way. This is why FMN is offering to visit businesses and other organisations to help educate people as to what is available.”

Below is a real example of how mediation can help with separation:

“When my husband and I separated after a long marriage, I assumed that sorting out the house, the money and the pension would be straightforward. After all, we were both reasonable people. But of course it wasn’t. Even the simplest suggestion carried a sub-text of emotional baggage which was never acknowledged, and it seemed impossible to narrow down the infinite possibilities to a settlement which felt ‘fair’ to both of us.

Our mediator had endless patience. She took us step by step through the implications of each option, and recorded the sums on a flip chart. Although she didn’t give legal advice, she was very clear about what the law allowed, and what courts were likely to approve, which really helped to eliminate some of the more unreasonable suggestions.

Above all, she gave us a structure within which we could keep on talking. Although it took longer than I had hoped to reach an agreement, I don’t think we would have got there at all without her.”

FMN is offering to visit local groups and businesses at a convenient time. There will be no cost associated with these presentations. To arrange a session please contact Rebekah Gershuny. To arrange a session please contact Rebekah Gershuny on rgershuny @collinslaw.co.uk or call her on 01923 223 324.

About mediation:

Mediation helps couples going through separation or divorce to talk things through with the help of an impartial adviser. Trained mediators help couples reach agreement about arrangements for their future, whether about finances or the way the children are cared for.

Benefits of mediation:

  • In mediation both parties are given an equal opportunity to have their say – they can voice their concerns and discuss their needs. Couples are in control; they make decisions for themselves, and avoid court-imposed solutions which may not be to either party’s liking.
  • Mediation keeps channels of communication open.
  • The process can be comparatively quick, particularly when compared to the court process. There are usually between four and six sessions (of 1½ – 2 hours). The parties can fix the agenda and make appointments to suit their calendars.
  • Mediation is the least expensive route for resolving divorce related issues. It saves the cost of expensive court battles and lengthy correspondence between solicitors.
  • At the end of the process mediators provide a comprehensive summary of the proposals which the parties or their lawyers can convert into a court order.

The FMN works alongside other professionals such as therapists, IFAs and accountants, to give parties access to the best help and information, to help them reach their own decisions.

FMN’s website can be accessed here

About Resolution:

Across England and Wales, Resolution has a membership of approximately 6,500 family law professionals who promote a non-confrontational constructive approach to resolving family disputes, in particular focusing on the needs of any children. For further information, go to www.resolution.org.uk.

For further information please contact:
Rebekah Gershuny
Collins Solicitors
01923 223 324
rgershuny@collinslaw.co.uk Aisling Collins
E M Collins & Co
020 8866 1820

Bernadette Hoy
Garside & Hoy
020 8427 5656

Elizabeth Sulkin
LMK Law Solicitors
020 8954 7474