Mediation has long been the recommended avenue by which to approach family disputes; but how have the reforms of the new Children and Families Act changed the requirement for Mediation Information and Assessment Meetings?
Part 2 of the Children and Families Act 2014 addresses Family Justice. If you intend to apply to the court with regard to family proceedings, the attendance of Mediation Information and Assessment Meetings beforehand has now formally become statutory requirement, per Section 10 of the Act.
Mediation Information and Assessment Meetings (MIAMs) are short meetings, conducted by an authorized mediator, that introduce individuals to the concept of mediation as a means of resolving their disputes rather than going the route of litigation.
Mediation Information and Assessment Meetings are convened no later than 15 working days after contacting a mediator. They will allow a discussion of the differences the parties are suffering, enlighten them on the ways that mediation could help them to resolve these differences and explore the possibility of mediation bringing about an out-of-court resolution.
If the mediator considers that mediation is unsuitable or is not an option for the resolution of the dispute, he will issue documentation to the effect that Mediation Information and Assessment Meetings have been attended, at which point the court will allow you to issue proceedings.
Certain circumstances may pertain that would dictate such Mediation Information and Assessment Meetings inappropriate, such as domestic violence, child protection, urgency, or previous MIAM attendance. If one or more of these are the case, the court may issue an exemption, though the court retains the right to make enquiries into the validity of the exemption.
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Brendan Fleming Solicitors are nationally recognized as a leading choice in the area of care work. We are justifiably proud of our expertise and our success rate. We are contracted to the Legal Services Commission for this type of work and are considered to be one of the leading national firms for publicly funded services.
Our principal, Brendan Fleming, has won a reputation for his innovative approach, spearheading many new ways of securing justice for families caught in the care proceedings trap. He is a member of a select children’s panel and recognized and approved by the Law Society.
If you are considering making an application to the Family Court and need to arrange attendance of Mediation Information and Assessment Meetings, see how we can help you: contact Brendan Fleming Solicitors today.