MEDIATION FOR MATRIMONIAL PROPERTY OR OTHER FAMILY DISPUTES
Mediation is a better way of resolving matrimonial property and other family disputes than going through the courts. Look at the following comparison between the two:
You will be seen in the public courts
Proceedings are not completely private
Court facilities are limited and basic
Courts and lawyers have limited time
Court proceedings are adversarial
Admissions can be used against you
Lawyers control your negotiations
Court imposed decisions are not creative
Litigation is time consuming and expensive
You will be in a private facility
Proceedings are completely private
Comfortable and convenient facilities
You have a mediator for an entire day
Mediation is facilitative
Confidentiality agreements protect you
You can control your negotiations
Mediated agreements can be creative
Mediation is quick and saves you money
The mediator’s role is to help ensure that the parties raise, discuss and then resolve the issues in dispute. The mediator provides a safe space where family members can talk about the matters that are important to them. The mediator will treat all parties impartially and fairly and will help them reach an agreement that they can live with. The agreement is theirs but can be enforced through the courts if one or other fails to honour the terms.
While courts make decisions in which there are winners and losers, those decisions do not preserve family relationships. On the other hand, because mediation is a facilitative process that allows family members to reach agreement, it enhances the chances of preserving important family relationships which, in the long run, may be as beneficial as the agreement itself.
Most importantly, where there are important family assets that must be divided or allocated, it does not make financial sense for the parties to dissipate those very assets by fighting one another through the courts. A mediation is less expensive than full scale litigation and is the sensible way to resolve differences.