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Cutting edge in family law

Mediation will never replace litigation, says Marilyn Stowe, but nevertheless should be nurtured as a valuable adjunct

27 August 2014

The government's attempts to promote mediation are faltering and it should launch a campaign to raise awareness, an official task force has concluded. However, the importance of mediation is such that young family law practitioners need to know and be trained in mediation to give them an edge.

Not only will there be more cases going to mediation which practitioners trained in this field can take advantage of, but the Ministry of Justice is keen to ensure it is part of the family law process.

At present, the cuts in legal aid mean that statistically, over the country, fewer couples are mediating. In the future this will gradually change and there are likely to be a higher percentage of couples mediating rather that litigating through the courts.

The courts are tightening up on ensuring mediation has been considered in every case. In particular, applicants to family proceedings must now attend a MIAMs (mediation and information assessment meeting) bef...

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