Mediation is a negotiation process whereby an impartial third party known as a mediator assists people in dispute come to an acceptable agreement. Unlike the court process, mediation gives both parties full control over the outcome as it can only work when everyone is in mutual agreement.
The mediator listens to both parties and works with them to identify the core issues and come up with mutually agreeable solutions that satisfy their needs. The primary aim of the mediation process is to facilitate a productive dialogue between disputing parties in a calm setting.
Put simply, mediation is a carefully guided process that seeks to arrive at a fair and equitable outcome for all involved. It is supervised by an impartial mediator who possess specialist training in resolving legal disputes.
Family law mediation
Because of the significant delays and waiting times in the Family Court system, separating parties are strongly encouraged to make a genuine attempt at resolving disputes via the mediation process. Under the law, parenting orders can only be applied for after obtaining a certificate that confirms you made a genuine attempt at mediation from a registered family dispute resolution practitioner.
The purpose of family law mediation is to find a path forward, rather than attempt to identify who is at fault for the separation. The process helps to break down barriers in communication between both parties and reduces the level of acrimony commonly experienced in family law disputes.
The mediation process can be engaged at any time, either before or during court proceedings. A mediator can help come to an agreement on disputes relating to:
- Parental responsibility;
- Child support;
- Spousal maintenance;
- Interim property;
- Contravention of existing orders and
- Implementation of orders
Mediation is also an effective means of resolving workplace conflicts. Disputes in the workplace have the potential to lead to a significant loss for an organisation in terms of both capital and managerial efficiency.
Because of the disruption that an employment dispute can cause, it’s necessary to have a resolution framework in place in order to address the issue as quickly as possible. The early engagement of a mediator can greatly reduce the financial and emotional stress of a workplace dispute.