Mediation is usually a voluntary process parties agree to. No party can force another party to mediate. However, many Courts and Tribunals now have compulsory dispute resoultion procedures.
In a Family Court matter, the attendance at mediation or alternative dispute resolution is compulsory before a matter can proceed to the Feferal Court of Australia or the Federal Circuit Court of Australia for determination.
The Family Court also requires compulsory mediation in all custody and parenting matters. Mediation involves the former spouse partners (and usually their lawyers) meeting with an independent person (preferably with family law expertise) who will assist in facilitating an agreement.
Not all mediations will result in a settlement or financial settlement but they can achieve resolution of some issues and will provide a useful opportunity to gain insight into the other party’s position.
If settlement is achieved at mediation then the parties move to the next steps in the process; applying to the Court for consent orders or entering into a Binding Financial Agreement. The final step is to enter into the necessary documentation to effect the agreed division of assets.
Call us today on +61 7 3001 2999 to find out how we can assist you with a family dispute or mediation, negotiating parenting plans or spousal maintenance agreements and all other family law matters.