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Anyone been through mediation?

(17 Posts)
Winniethewylde Mon 07-Dec-15 17:23:31

Just that really. Got my first appointment this week to try to sort out financials and I don't know what to expect. Does anyone have any advice please?

Winniethewylde Mon 07-Dec-15 18:05:19

Sorry for posting this lots of times, something must have gone a bit wrong.

deadrat Mon 07-Dec-15 18:36:15

In my experience, completely pointless exercise. Hopefully someone more helpful will be along soon. Good luck op.

kittybiscuits Mon 07-Dec-15 19:32:10

It's not pointless if you have a decent mediator and if your ex is essentially a reasonable human being. If they are abusive they will just lie, manipulate, drag it out so it costs a fortune and then ignore all of the agreements made. So it really does depend who you are dealing with.

Fidelia Mon 07-Dec-15 19:41:31

What kittybiscuits said...

Also, if you have strong emotional reactions to being around them, mediation will be very hard,but you can always aks to be in separate rooms...which is actually great for slowing down the process and letting you be able to respond emotionally in private.

Winniethewylde Mon 07-Dec-15 19:50:55

Thank you. The first appointment is just me on my own, what are they likely to ask?

kittybiscuits Mon 07-Dec-15 19:58:00

They will just seek to get a picture of the overall situation from your perspective and you will have the opportunity to say if there are any abuse/safety issues. I mapped out the broad situation, what assets there were, who earned what and what needed to happen. I warned them that my ex was a manipulative liar.

kittybiscuits Mon 07-Dec-15 19:59:12

They want to know what needs to be resolved and the separate meetings allow them to gauge whether or not mediation is worth attempting.

TooSassy Mon 07-Dec-15 20:15:35


Are there DC's involved in your divorce?

Winniethewylde Mon 07-Dec-15 20:32:31

Yes, 2

TooSassy Mon 07-Dec-15 20:42:56

Then you need to give mediation a go. When children are involved family courts want to see that is has at least been attempted.

If there has been abuse of any sort however it is not the route to go.

I am doing mediation and it is working well. I have to see this man for the rest of my life because of our DC's. And I know that it is in the DC's best interests that we remain as civil as possible. My friends whose parents divorced when they were young have two experiences.
1) where the parents remained civil and arguments etc were avoided (children much happier)
2) where the parents hated each other and there were arguments or the polar opposite of a Cold War. Those children have a very negative perception of marriage to this day.

My STBXH is a twunt of the highest order. He's lied and cheated but that shouldn't impact the DC's. For that reason alone mediation is a route that I have absolutely tried to make work. Because if we go to court, it won't be civil.

My mediator is good. I have one who has been doing family law for 20+ years and specialises in mediation now. There's nothing this mediator hasn't seen. It's a hell of a lot cheaper than lawyers and court. And it can move quite quickly (relative to waiting for dates for hearings et ).

Does that help?

Winniethewylde Tue 08-Dec-15 13:05:10

Thank you TooSassy, that is helpful.

STBEXH and i are amicable at the moment. He's a rubbish husband but a good dad, when he's around, so I hope we can keep it this way for the dcs sake. Although I predict that once we start ploughing through the financial stuff he may turn slightly. So far, he's not disclosing any information to me and appears to be waiting for the mediation session. I'm in the dark really. What information do I need to take with me?

LilaTheTiger Tue 08-Dec-15 13:11:28

Take as much info as you can with you. Pay slips, pensions, savings, bank statements, mortgage details etc. And they will want to know what you want from the sessions.

If he is not sharing financial info with you be very clear with him and them that you cannot possibly negotiate a split if you don't know what you are splitting - it's not difficult to understand but many men just don't see it hmm

Don't commit to any more sessions until he has been completely open about his finances, there's no point chucking your money at it.

In my case a mediation appointment was a box ticking exercise to show I was prepared to be reasonable and negotiate. My ex declared it ridiculous because they thought he shouldn't keep 95% of all marital assets. Bless him wink

Winniethewylde Tue 08-Dec-15 13:17:06

That's the trouble. I don't have any of that. He declared he would fully disclose in writing to my solicitor but so far I've seen nothing. I know the basics, house, mortgage etc but other assets, pensions etc I know nothing about.

Is it a waste of time me going if I can't bring any of those things with me?

LilaTheTiger Tue 08-Dec-15 13:23:47

No. It's not because you are showing willing, and that's what the court wants to see.

He will have to attend, and supply the info if he wants to stay out of court, and they can tell him that to save you the bother.

You wouldn't get to second appointment stage if he refuses to comply anyway, so you have nothing to lose by going (except your initial fee, which you'd have to pay at some point anyway)

You must take your info though, but you can ask for it not to be shared until he has been open.

Winniethewylde Tue 08-Dec-15 13:28:37

That's great, thank you. Ex seems to have his head stuck in the sand over this. He's busy playing the perfect dad role at the moment and when he received the divorce petition he didn't even open it. Or appoint his own solicitor. Can't wait to see what these sessions bring.

TooSassy Tue 08-Dec-15 14:27:13

The initial session I didn't need to take anything.

The mediator explained how the process of divorce works and where mediation fits in. It was an intro session.
It helps if you are able to explain high level stuff
- whose name house / mortgage is?
- how much mortgage is
- rough outgoings of running the house each month
- any assets you have (savings, pensions etc)
- equally any debt you have
You don't need supporting evidence at this early stage (statements etc)

IMO the DC's access is the most important and where the second session was focussed on. Getting that locked in and sorted. More for DC's sake than mine. Form E was also given.

Then we moved with completing form E (took longer than I wanted due to him stalling) but we are getting there.

If he refuses to attend mediation then it is a clear mark against him. He can refuse to appoint a lawyer and bury his head in the Sand all he wants. If he ignores and ends up in court, he's putting himself in the position of having to pay all your legal costs because he's forced you down this route.

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