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MIAM

If you’re going through a divorce or separation and have questions about parenting, finances, or property, you’ll probably need to attend an MIAM (Mediation information and assessment meeting).

Why is an MIAM meeting necessary in family law?

The Family Court’s regulations compel applicants in certain types of family proceedings to attend a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting (MIAM) prior to filing an application with the Court. The MIAM’s purpose is to educate the applicant about alternative dispute resolution (ADR) possibilities in lieu of judicial proceedings.

Mediation is one type of alternative dispute resolution (ADR), which is a secret dialogue conducted by a third party known as a mediator for the purpose of settling a broad variety of issues. Parties to mediation are prohibited from disclosing the content of any conversation or from relying on the evidence or information presented during the mediation. They are also not required to disclose the reasons for their failure to reach a settlement. Unless an exemption applies, the Court mandates that all applicants attend an MIAM and have satisfied with this obligation prior to initiating family proceedings.

If the applicant commences litigation without attending the MIAM, the Court may require the applicant to meet with the mediator to ensure compliance with the requirements; unless an exemption exists.

The MIAM’s primary goal is to educate the applicant about the different dispute resolution procedures available to him or her.

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Is attendance at the MIAM mandatory for the respondent?

The straightforward answer is no. The Court, however, will anticipate that the respondent will attend the MIAM. If the respondent fails to appear at MIAM, the applicant may institute proceedings, and the regulations do not exclude the applicant from doing so.

OCCASIONS IN WHICH I AM REQUIRED TO ATTEND A MIAM

If you are the following, you must attend an MIAM:

  • Obtaining a court order
  • On a Form C100, submit an application for a parental concern.
  • On a Form A, submit an application for a financial order.
  • Desiring to ask someone to mediation in order to resolve a conflict
  • Where both parties agree to attend mediation in order to address a problem
  • Additionally, numerous additional areas in which you are instituting particular judicial processes

A MIAM is not necessary if you are trying to enforce an existing court decision or if all parties agree on the result and want to acquire a legally valid order by consent.

IS IT SIMPLY A TICK BOX ACTIVITY?

Perhaps in a few instances. If you are aware that the other party does not wish to mediate or if you are certain that you do not wish to mediate yourself, for any reason, you are still required to attend an MIAM if you do not qualify for one of the 15 exemptions.

However, for many, understanding the benefits of mediation, having the process explained, and having a neutral organisation invite the opposing party to mediation may help you avoid court and reach an agreement more quickly.

WHAT IF I DO NOT WISH TO PARTICIPATE IN MEDIATION?

If you do not choose to attend mediation, you may simply explain your reasons to the mediator at the conclusion of the MIAM and they will release the MIAM certificate to allow you to file in court. The choice is entirely yours. You are not required to persuade the mediator in any case. Although you may be required to explain to the judge why you choose not to pursue mediation when you appear in court.

HOW COME WE CAN'T JUST GO DIRECTLY TO A JOINT MEDIATION APPOINTMENT?

The Family Mediation Council requires that anybody attending mediation meet with the mediator for an initial assessment meeting. This is because it enables the mediator to chat with you personally and get your perspective on the matter. It enables them to screen for domestic violence and ensure that you are participating in the mediation process voluntarily and not as a result of coercion.

Additionally, it enables them to create a strategy for your joint mediation sessions, increasing the likelihood that you will achieve an agreement in fewer sessions. Having a strategy in place, such as organising break out rooms, scheduling more breaks, or bringing in a second mediator, will make the mediation more favourable to your requirements and, thus, more likely to be successful.

DOES IT MAKE A DIFFERENCE WHO FIRST ATTENDS THE MIAM?

No, if both parties agree to mediation, you may schedule your appointments and they can even be scheduled concurrently. You can schedule a combination MIAM appointment with several mediation services. However, in the majority of situations, we will meet with one of you first and, if mediation is appropriate, we will write to the other party inviting them to contact us.

Throughout your mediation, you will typically see the same family mediator, and it will make little difference which of you they see first.

WHY ARE YOU UNABLE TO CONTACT THE OTHER PARTY PRIOR TO MY MIAM?

We do not contact the other party until we have determined that family mediation is a good fit for your situation. It is possible that whatever you say in your MIAM indicates that the mediator finds mediation inappropriate. We would not desire to invite someone to mediation just to inform them that it cannot proceed at this time.

When we write to the other party, we can also inform them that you have previously attended an MIAM and that, if mediation does not progress, we can provide you with a document for court.

WHEN AM I EXEMPT FROM ATTENDING A MIAM?

There are fifteen exceptions to the requirement to attend an MIAM. In cases when a child is in danger or domestic violence has occurred, most of these are based on urgency. Here is the complete list of exemptions. For parents, every issue that affects their children is of paramount importance. The court will want to study evidence or do more research before considering any exception.

Please call us at 0141 295 0021 if you have any questions about whether or not you qualify for an exemption. If we believe you should be granted an exemption, we will let you know as soon as possible. Court MIAMs may be an option if your case is minor and you don’t want to waste time having the court approve your MIAM exemption.

WHAT SHOULD I DO TO GET READY FOR MY MIAM?

Whether your MIAM takes place in person or online, you may have some questions for the mediator. It may be beneficial to jot these down before to your appointment. It may be beneficial to spend some time to consider your desired outcome from the mediation.

Additionally, you should read our privacy statement, which details how we keep and manage your data.

Apart than that, no preparation is necessary; your mediator will walk you through the process and address any issues you may have.

CAN I BRING A GUEST TO MY MIAM?

Yes. You can invite someone in to assist you, which can benefit the process by providing an extra set of ears, someone to take notes, or just someone to help you recall what was said. If you desire to invite someone, we only ask that you notify us in advance so that we can arrange the meeting area appropriately.

There are a few notable exceptions:

  • You are not permitted to bring your children to the appointment.
  • You should carefully examine whether bringing any adult children with you is appropriate.
  • You are not permitted to bring your solicitor to the MIAM.
  • Unless you have explicitly reserved a joint MIAM (which is not accessible via Albion Mediation), you should not bring the party with whom you are negotiating.

If you are unable to attend an MIAM due to the presence of a little kid under the age of two, please contact us and we will do our best to accommodate your circumstance.

DO YOU INFORM THE OTHER PARTY IF I BRING A GUEST?

No. We do not share what we talked with the other party during your MIAM or provide specifics about who you purchased with. Your MIAM is secure.

DO I NEED TO BRING ANY FORM OF IDENTIFICATION?

No. You are not need to bring identification to your MIAM. Albion Mediation will request identification after mediation continues to joint mediation in order to facilitate the transition to a legal package if an agreement is achieved.

WHAT OCCURES DURING A MIAM APPOINTMENT?

Your family mediator will meet you and take you through the procedure. The mediator will explain various pieces of information and exchange expertise with you throughout any MIAM with Albion Mediation – this is the mediation information section of your MIAM. Additionally, the mediator will ask you to explain your situation and the outcome you seek.

ACCORDING TO YOUR MEDIATOR, THE FOLLOWING WILL BE EXPLAINED:

That we are governed by the Family Mediation Council (FMC) and that our procedures are outlined in their rules.

  • The FMC has five membership organisations, and members will indicate which one they belong to.
  • They will go through the five mediation principles. That it is voluntary, unbiased, and confidential, that all decisions are made by the clients, and that we adhere to child inclusive criteria
  • That all mediation is non-prejudice – that is, you are allowed to explore offers without being obligated to accept them if mediation fails.
  • They will also discuss the five primary methods for resolving family disputes: family mediation, lawyer-to-lawyer communication, collaborative law, arbitration, and family court.

THE MEDIATOR WILL REQUIRE THE FOLLOWING FROM YOU:

  • Your name, address, and contact information.
  • Particulars about the opposite party to the conflict
  • Particulars about any children you may have
  • What do you wish to discuss – finances, parenting, or real estate?
  • A brief history of the relationship, such as when you married or began dating, etc.
  • Regardless of whether you are employed or not
  • Your desires and emotions – what you aim to accomplish via mediation
  • Whether you have been a victim of domestic violence or the police have been called to an altercation, safeguarding is critical.
  • Whether you want a divorce or a legal settlement at the conclusion of the mediation
  • Whether you retain the services of an attorney and the critical nature of obtaining particular legal counsel
  • Parenting — how is the situation now and what, if anything, would you change?
  • Financial Overview – an overview of the finances at issue and an explanation of the financial disclosure options available during divorce
  • Hopes and Wishes – what you desire for the future and what you believe would be a beneficial outcome of the mediation
  • The next steps – what we can do to continue. Whether you wish to initiate mediation and whether you wish for us to invite the opposing party.

SIGNPOSTING

The mediator may determine that it is beneficial to refer you to other services or organisations. Albion Mediation has partnered with a limited set of service providers that we are familiar with and trust to assist you. These include the following:

  • Financial planners
  • Psychiatrists and counsellors
  • Solicitors and legal consultants
  • Charities dedicated to child law
  • Domestic abuse advocacy group
  • Advice to Citizens
  • Brokers de crédit
  • Will authors
  • Pension specialists
  • Any other organisation that you believe may be able to assist you in your circumstance

MEDIATION WITH CHILDREN

In the case of a parental dispute, the mediator will clarify what kid inclusive mediation entails so that you may explore and debate it during your joint mediation.

The mediator will inquire as to whether you wish to seek mediation. Additionally, they will clarify any measures they take and agree on the following stages with you.

Your family mediator will meet you and take you through the procedure. The mediator will explain various pieces of information and exchange expertise with you throughout any MIAM with Albion Mediation – this is the mediation information section of your MIAM. Additionally, the mediator will ask you to explain your situation and the outcome you seek.

WHAT OCCURES DURING A MIAM APPOINTMENT?

Your family mediator will meet you and take you through the procedure. The mediator will explain various pieces of information and exchange expertise with you throughout any MIAM with Albion Mediation – this is the mediation information section of your MIAM. Additionally, the mediator will ask you to explain your situation and the outcome you seek.

Get in touch with us to learn more about how Albion Mediation may help you with your parenting or financial dispute as well as your divorce, separation, or legal advice. Contact us now to get started! CALL 0141 295 0021 OR CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION.