Resolving disputes

When couples separate or divorce, and families face breakdown, there are many practical and emotional issues to resolve.

You may have to decide where your children are going to live and whether or not to sell the family home. Separation can cause great uncertainty to all members of the family, and at this stressful time many couples find it hard to talk to each other about their concerns and the plans they need to make.

Mediation can help because it gives you a private and supportive setting to talk through all the issues surrounding your divorce or separation.

Professionally, trained mediators provide you with the tools to untangle all the strands around family breakdown, whether it is before, during or after the event, and offer you a structured process that helps you focus on your practical plans for the future. Mediators do not tell you what to do, but help you work this out for yourselves.

By resolving issues through mediation, you stay in control of all the decisions that affect your family, which the mediator can record in a written agreement for you. Mediation also helps you find new ways of communicating with your ex-partner and helps you build a future in your new circumstances. In particular, it can help you support your children as they make the necessary adjustments in their home life.

Mediation is typically a quarter of the the cost and four times quicker than taking the court route.

Read Sue and Dave's account of mediation

Read more about reaching and resolving disputes for parents, where children are involved and how to help as a family member or a friend.

National Family Mediation (NFM) is a network of professional family mediation providers based in England and Wales that work with families affected by relational breakdown. All providers aim to help clients achieve an outcome that works best for them and their family

If you would like to get more information about mediation and/or make an appointment you can contact NFM direct on 0300 4000 636 or you can contact a NFM family mediation provider in your area.

All family mediation services also take referrals from Solicitors, the court or other helping / support agencies.

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