You may have read recently that legal aid has gone for people looking to separate and divorce. This is true, although it will still be available in extremely limited circumstances such as where domestic abuse has been a factor in the relationship. This means that people will have to either pay privately for advice from solicitors or deal with it themselves. Organisations such as the Citizens Advice Bureau may be able to help, although few will have family solicitors on their rota.
It is not all doom and gloom, however. If people are willing to co-operate with each other, mediation offers an extremely cost-effective way of resolving matters arising out of divorce and separation. The parties sit together with a mediator and work out the terms and settlement of their divorce. Since both parties are sitting together, there is much less chance of misunderstandings and questions can be readily raised instead of going backwards and forwards between solicitors.
Financial matters are much better resolved through mediation since it is a much quicker process. This means there is less time for tensions to begin to destroy any initial co-operation between the parties. This can only be good for everyone concerned.
If children are involved, then contact arrangements can be sorted out through mediation and any concerns discussed and talked through. For reasonable people looking to do what is in their children’s best interests, mediation is a positive way forward.
For more information about mediation, please visit my website at www.dealmediationservices.co.uk or call me on 01304 800 001.