The aim of mediation is to assist you to reach agreement regarding your legal dispute without the expense and emotional stress of going to Court.
Mediation can help identify the key issues in your dispute and explore options for their resolution. It is a process where you are encouraged to explore options rather than solutions being imposed on you.
The Court encourages mediated solutions and an attempt at alternative dispute resolution is a requirement before filing a Court Application.
Am I required to attend mediation?
Before you can apply to the family court for a Parenting Order, you need to demonstrate that you have made a genuine effort to resolve your parenting dispute and attended family dispute resolution (mediation) with an accredited provider.
If you are unable to agree on a parenting plan after mediation, or the other parent refuses to attend, you will be issued a certificate to verify that you have attempted to resolve your issues through mediation. You can then make an application to have the parenting arrangements determined by the Court.
Do I need legal representation during mediation?
While there is no requirement to have your lawyer present during mediation, you can and should get advice before undertaking any family dispute resolution process.