Mediation: Resolving family disputes, lessening family acrimony

Mediation: Resolving family disputes, lessening family acrimony


Mediation is a process to help couples who have decided to separate or divorce to talk things through. Mediators are trained to help you reach an agreement about how to make the best arrangements for the future. This may be about the way the children are cared for, or how finances will be organised.

Talking face to face when a relationship breaks down can be daunting but the mediator will help you to start to communicate and focus on what really matters.


Mediation can ease the pain of family breakdown because it:

  • Helps to reduces tension and hostility.
  • Helps you make informed decisions that are right for your circumstances.
  • Keeps communication channels open.
  • Can reduce the costs of your separation or divorce.
  • Can benefit children throughout the process by enabling parents to work together and keep communicating.

Mediators provide impartial guidance to help you understand what matters to you. They will help you to reach practical solutions that feel fair to both of you, and your family. Our mediators have been trained by Resolution; they are also qualified practising solicitors with a thorough legal knowledge to complement their mediation skills. They can therefore guide you ‘in the shadow of the law’.

Each mediation session will probably last between one and two hours. Most couples attend a number of sessions together with the mediator, five or six sessions is not uncommon.

You can consult your own solicitor at any time to take independent advice on what is best for you. The mediator cannot provide you with legal advice. When you are both content with the decision you have reached, your proposal is then approved by your solicitor who completes the legal formalities.


For further information about mediation please contact:

Nicola Harries – Partner and Head of Family
Tel: 01483 401262 Email:

Caroline Gordon-Smith – Partner, Family
Tel: 01483 401215 Email:


The information contained in this article is designed to provide, for guidance purposes only, a general introductory summary of the subject matters covered. It does not purport to be exhaustive nor to provide legal advice nor should be used as a substitute for such advice.

© Stevens & Bolton LLP 2015

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