What is Mediation?

Mediation creates an opportunity for separating couples to reach their own decisions about
child arrangements and finances, with guidance from a trained and impartial mediator. You
and your partner will be encouraged to co-operate with one another to negotiate and find
your own ways to move forward post separation. Mediation is a voluntary process and whilst
the court will expect separating couples to at least consider mediation by way of attendance
at a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting (see below) the courts cannot force any
individual to engage with mediation prior to court proceedings. Mediation is
a confidential process, meaning that any proposals made in mediation cannot be referred to
within child proceedings or financial proceedings should matters be progressed to court.
Your mediator is an impartial third party and will therefore encourage you both to resolve
the issues and make your own arrangements for the future, as opposed to ‘taking sides’ or
imposing a decision on you.

The mediator’s role is not to ‘advise’ as such, but instead to provide an environment within
which you and your partner can openly discuss your situation and work together to agree a
way forward. If you and your partner are able to successfully able to mediate and reach a
resolution on your issues, your mediator will prepare your written agreement which is called
a ‘Memorandum of Understanding’.

When to mediate?

The Mediation, Information and Assessment Meeting (MIAM) is the first meeting with a
qualified family mediator to consider whether your issues can be resolved without the need
to start court proceedings and whether mediation might be a suitable option for the couple
attending. It is compulsory for the majority of couples seeking to resolve disputes in respect
of their children or finances to attend a MIAM. However, there are exceptions to the
requirement to attend a MIAM which include circumstances such as where the relationship
involves domestic abuse or where there is an urgent matter to be resolved.
The MIAM is therefore the first step that you should take when resolving your financial and
children matters. Following the MIAM it is advisable to engage in mediation on the basis that
if an agreement can be reached via mediation, you will not need to engage in what is often
a lengthy, stressful, and expensive court process. You can seek legal advice from a family
solicitor during the mediation process however this advice must be sought from a separate
family solicitor who acts solely for you; your partner would need to seek the advice of an
alternative solicitor too.

After your MIAM, you and your partner should seek the assistance of a mediator. Our
mediator Kelly-Ann Welsh is available to guide you and your partner through mediation,
assisting you in your communication and encouraging the reaching of agreements between
you. If you would like to speak with Kelly-Ann, or begin your mediation process, contact our
High Wycombe or Marlow offices to arrange an appointment. This appointment can be
either face to face at our High Wycombe or Marlow Office or via video call.
Mediation should be considered as an option in circumstances where you and your partner
have a genuine desire to work together and reach a solution that works for you both.

Should you mediate?

Mediation grants you and your partner a significant degree of control over resolving your
financial affairs and arrangements for your children. You will therefore have the option to
reach more creative and flexible solutions than a court may be likely to impose, and you will
be able to deal with multiple issues at once, and you will both be much more autonomous in
this process as opposed to if you become subject to court proceedings
Mediation is also considerably less stressful than the court process, particularly when dealing
with sensitive issues. Mediation allows you to work with your partner and, where successful,
avoids the need to engage in protracted discussions regarding the issues most personal to
you in correspondence with solicitors and in a court setting before a judge.
Mediation will also likely offer the benefit of improved communication now and in the future
with your partner. This will be particularly important if you and your partner have children
and therefore ongoing communication will be crucial for managing child arrangements in the

As mediation does not produce a legally binding decision, arrangements can be reviewed
and varied, meaning you and your partner will have a greater degree of flexibility which may
be appropriate in respect of child arrangements. It is often the case that child arrangements
agreed through mediation last longer than orders imposed by the court. Agreements can
however become legally binding once made into a Consent Order, which is an agreed
document put before a judge and ordered by the court.
Mediation, where successful, is also capable of providing a quicker and cheaper way of
resolving disputes.

Why chose Curzon Green?

Our family mediator Kelly-Ann Welsh is known for her down-to earth and friendly manner.
She is thorough, efficient, and perhaps most importantly in the family law arena, extremely
approachable. Kelly-Ann qualified as a family solicitor in 2014 and is a member of
Resolution, an organisation which promotes good practice within the field and a constructive
approach to resolving family issues. Kelly-Ann has a conciliatory and sensitive approach and
is therefore best placed to assist with encouraging you and your partner to openly discuss
your circumstances and reach workable agreements in respect of your family matters.
What happens if mediation is not working?
If, despite initial best intentions, you and your partner are not able to reach an agreement
with the assistance of a mediator, it may no longer be appropriate to engage in mediation.
At this stage, you will need to instead seek the assistance of the court to come to a decision
for you. As we would have acted for you in capacity as your mediator, and therefore an
impartial third party, we would not be able to take instructions from you as your solicitor,
and you would need to obtain legal advice and assistance with court proceedings from an
alternative firm. You can of course represent yourself if you do not wish to instruct a

Our Fees:
For an initial meeting of up to 1 hour with each party separately (which can be done in
person or remotely by video) our fixed rate is £125 +VAT per person.

If both parties are happy to proceed and we are able to assist, the first joint session will be
booked in. These sessions will be for 1 hour and a half and can also be in person or remote.
Our fixed rate for these sessions is £300 +VAT per session, with the cost to be shared
between you. We would recommend 4-6 sessions.

Any documentation that is created, such as the memorandum of understanding or financial
statement, is charged at the hourly rate of £250 +VAT.

If you would like to discuss our mediation process further, or you wish to book in for an
initial consultation with Kelly-Ann Welsh, please do not hesitate to give us a call.