How a Balanced Mediation May Tip the Scales in your Favour…

13-May-2019 Family Law By admin

Mediation is an alternate dispute resolution process that offers a non-litigated pathway to resolving disputes. Mediation attempts to reach mutually beneficial outcomes for those involved in a dispute (‘the parties’). Mediation is generally voluntary and undertaken prior to court proceedings but a matter may be referred to mediation by a Judge prior to a final Court hearing. The decision to engage in Mediation, is often made to avoid the substantial costs and time-consuming nature of ongoing litigation.

The main advantages of Mediation are:

  • Empowerment: the parties feel more control over the outcome of their dispute.
  • Confidentiality: discussions during Mediation are all confidential and cannot be used against either party later on if the Court proceedings commence or continue.
  • Unique Solutions: Mediation takes place in a less formal environment which is often more conducive to open communication and creative problem-solving and sets the tone for a favourable outcome.
  • Neutrality: the Mediator is independent and non-biased, and their goal is to help the parties reach a practical solution to their problem.
  • Cost-effectiveness: Mediation offers a less expensive and at times, more direct pathway to reaching an outcome.
  • Efficiency: Mediation is faster than going to court.

Mediation is increasingly favoured as an alternate dispute resolution process to the adversary system of formal Court proceedings. Mediation can be used in a variety of disputes including family law disputes involving parenting and financial issues. It is compulsory to at least attempt to mediate parenting disputes (with some exceptions for violence and urgency) prior to making a Court Application.

Did You Know?
Mediation has a long history. There is reference to Mediation in ancient history, in as early as 19th Century BC, between Assyrian merchants, and, also found in the records of ancient Greece, Rome and Egypt.

The former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of New South Wales, Spigelman, J in 2000 said:

“The success of mediation cannot be measured merely by savings in money and time. The opportunity of achieving participant satisfaction, early resolution and just outcomes are relevant and important reasons for referring matters to mediation.” 1.

Even if a dispute does not completely resolve at Mediation, it may reduce the issues in dispute and reduce the length of a court Hearing.

At Streeterlaw we take a holistic approach to advising you on how to achieve your best outcome. To speak to one of our Family Law Specialists today to discuss how we can help you best resolve your dispute call 8197 0105.

1. The Honourable Chief Justice JJ Spigelman, “Address to the LEADR Dinner”, University and Schools Club Sydney, 9 November 2000

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