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MacNairs + Wilson

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Separated Parents Urged to Use Mediation Ahead of Holiday Season

Separated couples and those who are going through divorce have been urged by a UK family charity to use mediation to avoid disputes over the Christmas period.

The National Family Mediation (NFM) is recommending that separated parents start thinking about how child care arrangements may have to be altered over the festive period to avoid disputes.

Mediation to Resolve Child Custody

With so much to do at Christmas, a court approved living agreement that works the rest of the year can be painfully exposed. By using mediation, any issues that may arise from these arrangements can be resolved in time for the holiday season.

Jane Robey, CEO of National Family Mediation, a charity that helps families reach post-separation agreements on parenting and other issues said: “For separated families, far from being a time of joy, Christmas can heap tension upon tension.

“Living arrangements that work well all year can be exposed as inadequate. And there can be turmoil for pick-ups and drop-offs when children need to visit relatives they haven’t seen for the past year.

“Christmas places huge pressures on families, and it’s a time when separated couples often find settlements imposed by divorce courts don’t work. As a result, the child is caught helplessly in the middle, leading to a thoroughly miserable Christmas.

“Family mediation can help both separated parents agree on arrangements that suit them both and that, crucially, ensure the child has a positive and enjoyable Christmas.

“A positive parenting plan, agreed by both parents, is easier to achieve than many people think. Starting with an open mind, the parents need to accept that while their own relationship can’t be saved, the vital bonds between child and each parent can actually go from strength to strength.”

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Mediation is one of the most common types of alternative dispute resolution and can be exceptionally useful to couples who have separated. Mediation involves both parties discussing their situation and reaching an agreement with the assistance of a third party, also known as a mediator.

Mediation can prove to be exceptionally beneficial as it allows parties to discuss their wants and needs rather than have a mandate put down by a court that may not suit either party. Furthermore, using mediation or other types of dispute resolution is significantly cheaper, and often quicker than using the court system. While alternative dispute resolution can be beneficial for resolving child residence issues, mediation can also be used to help resolve all disputes that arise out of divorce or separation such as dividing assets.

Family Lawyers Glasgow and Paisley

While mediation may be beneficial, it may not always be possible. If you require legal advice regarding child custody, divorce or separation our team of family solicitors can help you get the legal advice and guidance you need. Get in touch with our team using our online contact form or call our customer service team on 0141 530 4881.

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