Family Law 101: Why Mediation Is Best for Your Kids in Family Dispute Resolution

Children benefit in family mediation

Getting a divorce is one of the most stressful life events you can experience. Trying to reach an agreement that has the least impact on your children can be tricky, especially if the separation is not particularly amicable.

Many divorcing and separating couples use mediation as an alternative to resolve problems without going to court. Even if you think things have gone too far, mediation can help with high-conflict separations.

Family mediation might not be the first solution that comes to mind, but it's often the best one. It can significantly reduce the stress of divorcing, allowing you to move on much quicker and very much cheaper than using lawyers and going through the family courts. It is also better for your kids for several reasons.

Family law terms and definitions

Before we go deeper into the topic, here is a definition of some unfamiliar and legal terms.

Family dispute resolution practitioner

A professional who helps families resolve conflicts and reach agreements, especially about parenting or financial issues, without going to court.

Family dispute resolution service

A service that provides support and mediation to help families resolve disputes, often involving issues like child custody, property division, and other family-related conflicts. It is offered by the Family Relationship Centre.

Family mediation

A process where a neutral third party, called a mediator, assists family members in discussing and resolving their disputes in a cooperative and non-adversarial manner.

Family violence

Any form of abuse, including physical, emotional, or psychological harm, that occurs within a family or between intimate partners.

Financial assistance is provided to individuals who cannot afford legal representation and advice.

Guidance provided by a qualified lawyer or legal professional regarding legal rights, obligations, and the best course of action in a particular situation.

legal assistance in family mediation

Reasons why family dispute resolution (FDR) or mediation is best

Family mediation is less stressful than going to court

Mediation is much less stressful for all parties compared to going through court orders and all that drama. When you’re stressed as a parent, this is always picked up by your children and creates more unease in the home.

Lawyers cost thousands of dollars and it can take months (sometimes years) to finalise your divorce. You will almost certainly end up with a much bigger legal bill than you ever expected, which will have a significant impact on your financial situation.

Mediation, on the other hand, costs only a few hundred dollars per person, which is much more affordable. No need to worry about being able to afford new school shoes or pay for their next school excursion.

Mediation is confidential

Everything that happens in mediation is completely private and confidential. There is no public record of it, so your children don’t ever have to know what has transpired.

Keeping the process private will mean less of an impact on your children and you don’t have to worry about anyone sharing public information with them either.

Mediation is quicker than going to court

When you divorce using the federal circuit and family court system, your divorce may take months or years to finalise. During this period of uncertainty, your life is on hold – the kids will pick up on this and the months of stress can rub off on them.

Successful mediation will help you settle your terms of separation or divorce a lot quicker. Most couples need only one mediation session to come to a mutual agreement on how to proceed with splitting their assets and parenting arrangements for the kids.

This makes is a lot better for your children as they can get used to any new living arrangements that have been made with confidence and mutual agreement between you and your ex.

FDR works (cont.)

It focuses on parenting plans that are best for your kids

A mediator’s role is to be completely impartial. They are there to help you and your ex to come to a mutual agreement on the terms of your divorce.

They are not there to take sides or favour one person over the other. This is very different to lawyers who are clearly representing one side or the other and looking for small differences to argue about.

If you have children, the mediator needs to consider their best interests when mediating between two parents. This makes it one of the best ways to divorce if you have your children’s best interests at heart.

Mediation is the best thing you can do for your kids if you are separating or divorcing. Find a local mediator today who can help you move on quickly and affordably, with the least amount of stress for not only you but also your children.

Summary: Use FDR to resolve conflicts

Choosing family mediation is one of the best decisions you can make for your children during a separation. Unlike the stressful atmosphere of a courtroom, mediation creates an environment where you and your ex can work together to find the best solutions for your children and property. It helps protect your little ones from the emotional turmoil brought by conflicts. It shows your kids that even though Mum and Dad might not be together anymore, they can still work as a team. In the end, choosing mediation not only saves time and money but also preserves the family bonds that are important for your children’s sense of security and their emotional and psychological health.

Remember, a mediator will help you focus on what's truly important—the kids. In doing so, you can come up with a parenting plan that will make your children happier and give them a more stable environment. No matter how much you loathe your ex, make a genuine effort and always attend mediation sessions. Believe me, the dispute resolution process works. I have seen several friends resolve their family law disputes and are living happier lives now.

Why mediation is the best thing you can do for your kids | Beanstalk Single Mums Pinterest

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