Hello, I’m Angie Brown and I’m an FMCA Mediator. For those of you who don’t know, that means that I have achieved a high level of professional status to be able to offer Family mediation appointments to couples who are separating, thinking of separating, need assistance in considering and dealing with any issues pertaining to separation, which includes financial matters, matters relating to their children and or of course both.
Mediation is NOT Counselling
This has been a common misconception for many years. Mediation is a process that is separate to the legal process and takes a much more holistic approach to enable separating couples to deal with whatever issues they feel are pertinent to their own personal circumstances. The mediators role is not to advise them, unlike a solicitor, but to assist them in trying to regain communication and enable the communication about those matters that they want to put on the agenda.
I’m very passionate about this as an approach to resolving family matters. This is because it is so much more cost effective and quicker than going through court and it puts the control of what issues need to be addressed and how to address them, in the hands of the couple, as opposed to in the hands of a Judge they have never met before.
The Role of a Mediator
I see my role as a mediator in helping couples try and address their family issues and evolve as a family. In most cases, couples are going to be parents for a long time or have continued family ties by virtue of a marriage or a long relationship. Due to the significant and emotive decisions that need to be taken, the “uncoupling” is not as simple as just coming up with some numbers on finances or agreeing dates and times for when child arrangements can take place. My aim as a mediator is to help couples to progress past the point of separation and continue to readdress the balance of their family unit, helping them to examine the nuts and bolts of how that can develop and work for them all in the future.
As it has been national Family Mediation Week (from 16th January to 20th January 2023), Dootsons has added lots of interesting resources about what mediation is and how it can work in the ‘Mediation Resources’ section on our website. If mediation is something that you think may be of interest, you’ll find everything you need about the subject from our website.
What’s the process?
One of the main aspects of helping Mediation to work is by setting appropriate boundaries as to exactly how that will work. I promise it is not as scary as it might sound, but the first meeting you would have, would be between just you and me, where we would discuss what the process is, as well as fully explaining to you exactly what you could expect.
If you feel you are at the point where you would like to take the next step, submit your details here and someone will come back to you.
That initial meeting is called a MIAM. This stands for Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting. It is time that I take specifically to sit down and explain fully to you what the process is and assess whether it is appropriate to your specific circumstances. We can then look at moving Mediation forward if it is appropriate.