Why we’re campaigning for a fairer family justice system
By Nicki Mitchell, Jones Myers Family Law Mediator, Child Inclusive Mediator and Collaborative Family Lawyer
With the family justice system at a crucial turning point, Jones Myers is backing a national campaign to create a fairer family justice system for all.
Organised by family justice group Resolution, Awareness Week 2023, which spans November 27- December 1, highlights the different ways families can resolve their disputes away from Court – where it is safe and appropriate to do so.
We wholeheartedly support Resolution’s vision for the way forward which has been launched at a special parliamentary event and coincides with the group’s 40th anniversary.
A long-standing member of Resolution, our niche family law firm leads the way in seeking non-confrontational solutions, wherever possible – always putting children’s best interests at the heart of a relationship breakdown.
We promote alternatives to a drawn out and stressful Court divorce which include the following:
Mediation – where separating couples discuss the issues most important to them with a qualified mediator like me, working constructively towards agreed arrangements for the family’s long-term interests.
With the right mediator, financially complex issues can also be resolved. Specialist advisers, including financial advisers and pensions experts, can attend meetings to provide neutral advice. Solicitors can also be present if either or both of the couple feels they need that support. Mediation enables couples to gain a full understanding of the issues and resolve them within a timescale which suits them, keeping communication channels open. Any agreement is confidential to the couple.
Child Inclusive Mediation enables children to have their voices heard. As a Child Inclusive Mediator, I meet separately with children (with consent from them and their parents), encouraging them to discuss their take on the changing family situation.
They can also ask me to feed back specific messages to their parents, often giving them valuable insights when deciding matters affecting their children.
Mediation enables parents to agree practical, legal, and financial solutions with their children’s best interests at heart. It also gives children a much-needed platform to express their innermost hopes and concerns for the future.
Collaborative Family Law – where a “no court” agreement is signed at the outset in a shared commitment to find an agreed resolution.
Each of the couple appoints their own collaboratively trained lawyer who will work with them to identify what other professional input they need, whether financial, emotional or other support, and will work with them as a team to find, address, and resolve key issues.
Jones Myers expert mediators and collaborative family lawyers can assist you in these non-confrontational options which keeps communication channels open for many divorcing couples and enables them, and their children, to move on with their lives.
Our firm is also a long-standing supporter of Resolution’s campaign for cohabitation reform – a key element and priority of the group’s Vision for Family Justice.
Contrary to popular belief, common law marriage is a myth as the law does not offer couples who live together the same protection as married couples.
Jones Myers specialist family lawyers can advise those in this situation on their rights before they move in together or should their relationship breakdown.
For more information on mediation or other family law issues, call our Leeds office 0113 246 0055, our Harrogate office 01423 276104, or our York office on 01904 202550. Visit www.jonesmyers.co.uk, email firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet us @helpwithdivorce
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