Family mediation is a way to help you and another family member to agree on practical matters that you find difficult to agree on by yourselves. Family mediation typically helps separating parents to agree on arrangements about their children, but it can also help with a wide variety of other issues such financial matters for separating partners and disputes between family members about a will.
How does mediation work?
Mediation can be quicker, cheaper and a lot less stressful than going to court to resolve disagreements. The mediator will meet with you and the other person individually to begin with. They will assess whether your situation is suitable for mediation and whether there are any special points to look out for during the mediation process. Issues about children can often be resolved in 1-2 sessions, while other issues can take 3-4 sessions.
Do I have to attend mediation?
Mediation is a voluntary process, so no-one can be forced to attend. However, some applications to the Family Court do require you to attend an assessment meeting called a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting (a “MIAM”) first. An agreement worked out by you and the other person usually works better than orders imposed by the court so it really is worth trying to resolve your issues through mediation.
How much will it cost?
If you are eligible for Legal Aid then all the sessions are free providing the mediator accepts clients eligible for Legal Aid. If a person has to pay then the sessions cost approximately £150.00 each.
How can I find a family mediator in Suffolk?
All of the mediators listed below accept Legal Aid clients. Mediation is usually done in-person but during the Covid-19 pandemic appointments are conducted by ‘phone.
You should say that you need a mediation appointment for the purpose of family court proceedings.
- The Family Mediation Trust (they have a number of mediators in different parts of Suffolk)
Tel. (01603) 620588
- Barbara Robb
Tel. (01502) 575252
- Peter Baughan
Tel. (01603) 679059
- Brenda Head at Alpha Mediation
Tel. 07715 527255
You can also search for local mediators based on a postcode at https://www.familymediationcouncil.org.uk/. This website provides a wide range of information about mediation.
This Factsheet is not legal advice
Please remember that this factsheet gives general legal information. While every effort has been made to ensure that the information is correct, this cannot be guaranteed. It is not a substitute for legal advice. You should always seek legal advice for a legal matter.
This Factsheet was updated on 09 September 2021.
How to contact Suffolk Law Centre
Address: 46a St. Matthews Street, Ipswich, Suffolk IP1 3EP.
Telephone: (01473) 408111