When parents separate, the concern of how to effectively manage and arrange the care of their children comes to the forefront. Just Divorce Mediation often serves as a pathway to making these critical decisions without going through a court battle.
But one question that weighs heavily on the minds of separating parties is: how long does child arrangement mediation take? Here, we delve deep into this process, outlining the expected timelines and what you can expect every step of the way.
Child Arrangement Mediation
Child arrangement mediation is a process where separating parents come together to discuss and negotiate the terms of their children’s upbringing and care with the aid of a neutral third party, known as a mediator.
The Initial Considerations
Each case’s duration can vary significantly and can be influenced by various factors:
- The complexity of the issues at hand: More complicated situations involving multiple children or cross-jurisdictional concerns can take longer to resolve.
- The availability of the parties: Finding mutually convenient times for meetings can extend the process duration.
- The readiness and willingness to negotiate: If both parties are co-operative and prepared, agreements can be reached more swiftly.
The Mediation Process: A Step-by-Step Approach
- Individual Assessment Meetings (MIAMs)
Mediation begins with each party attending a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting (MIAM), which usually lasts about 45 minutes to an hour. During this stage, mediators assess whether mediation is suitable for the case.
- Joint Mediation Sessions
Following the MIAMs, if mediation is deemed appropriate, joint sessions are scheduled. These can take from an hour to two hours and the number of sessions required substantially influences the duration.
- Implementation and Legalisation of Agreements
Once an agreement is reached, mediators will typically draft a “Memorandum of Understanding.” Parties may then wish to legalise these agreements through the court, which can add to the overall timeline.
Factors Affecting Duration
- The number of issues to be resolved: The more issues that need to be addressed, the longer mediation may take.
- The depth of conflict: High-conflict situations tend to require more time.
- The mediator’s approach: Different mediators and services, such as Just Divorce Mediation, may employ varying techniques that can impact the timeline.
The Anticipated Length of Child Arrangement Mediation
Just Divorce Mediation prides itself on facilitating this process with expertise and sensitivity, aiming for an efficient and child-centred resolution for all parties involved.