To complement the traditional family mediation process we now offer a new mediation model. Hybrid mediation allows those who are reluctant to engage in the traditional process to mediate in a more supported way. It is an excellent alternative to the court route where the less adversarial mediation model also allows for simultaneous support from your own solicitor.
What is hybrid mediation?
Hybrid mediation retains the fundamental principles of family mediation (such as joint meetings), but your solicitors, where appointed, have a more direct and constructive role in the process, and can also attend.
At joint meetings, this option permits mediators to have separate, confidential discussions with each party and their solicitors to allow issues and “red lines” to be explored, to address concerns and to formulate proposals for settlement. Within careful boundaries, this model allows for more flexibility and creativity.
The hybrid model is most advantageous where one or more of the following apply:
- Your finances require more complex planning/negotiation
- Your or your partner/spouse has a real difficulty negotiating face to face on an immediate basis
- Your or your partner/spouse have certain personality traits that make it hard to reach an agreement
- Either you or your partner/spouse has a genuine inability to understand the other’s thinking or intent
- Either you or your partner/spouse wants to mediate but have genuine concerns or feelings of intimidation about negotiating directly
- Where negotiations are stuck and joint conventional mediation sessions are no longer proving helpful
The model lends itself easily to remote meetings. The mediator can meet with the two instructed solicitors, and with the couple themselves, with their solicitors alongside if required. Meetings can be arranged as frequently or infrequently as required. Documents can be scanned to all involved. If the couple are able to reach an agreement, their solicitors can advise on the spot and immediately draft an order by consent.
An efficient and effective process
The process is time efficient and cost effective. With a court system under strain, hearings are being adjourned without parties having any firm idea of when they will be re-listed. There are huge delays in the court system that are not likely to improve. Hybrid mediation is a viable alternative that can help resolve matters far more quickly and amicably.
Time and cost
As with traditional mediation there is significant flexibility over timing. By its nature, involving four parties in addition to the mediator, each session is likely to take longer. Half a day is likely to be the minimum period needed, but a session can be ended early if a natural break point has been reached, or extended if the parties wish it.
Please contact Grace Parker-White for more information.