THE MEDIATION PROCESS

Perth Family Dispute Resolution (PFDR) Specialises in Family Dispute Resolution; Family Law Mediation and the Drafting of Parenting Plans – Financial Settlements and Property Agreements.

Relationship breakdowns are often the hardest time in people’s lives. It can be full of confusion and often leads to arguments and further anguish. Apart from the emotional, there are Financial and Parenting considerations.

But where do you begin?

Once you have concluded that there is no chance of reconciliation then you should make formal arrangements for your Children and finances. Failure to do so may leave you financially liable for your ex-partners spending habits. You can see a Lawyer to explain your Legal rights in more detail.

Your most valuable assets are your Children and they will already be feeling the strain of the separation. The aim is to make the transition into your new life as smooth as possible for them. Having a “Parenting Plan” in place makes this possible and reduces stressful arguments. 

Mediation before Court

The Family Law Act now requires that any matter pertaining to Children must see the Parents first make a ‘genuine effort’ to resolve the dispute before proceeding to Court. This is where Family Dispute Resolution (FDR) comes in. Only a registered Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner (FDRP) can issue the required Section 60I Certificate that is required to proceed to Court.

Ongoing 'Parental Conflict' is harmful for Children

Our fully trained, experienced and Nationally Accredited, PFDR Family Dispute Resolution Practitioners can successfully facilitate a mutually agreeable resolution to most Parenting; Property or Financial disputes. Our aim is to keep both parties out of Court and thus save them time, money and reduce the overall stress of the separation. This is extremely important as while Children adjust fast and cope quite well with separation when its managed satisfactorily by the Parents, ongoing Parental conflict can be damaging to Children’s development and emotional stability.

The types of parent behaviours that have been identified as being highly problematic are:

  • asking Children to carry hostile messages to the other parent
  • asking Children intrusive questions about the other parent
  • creating a need in the Child/ren to hide information
  • creating a need for the Child/ren to hide positive feelings for the other parent, and
  • demeaning or putting down the other parent in the presence of the Child/ren.

This behavior called 'Parental Conflict' may manifest itself in any number of negative ways including behavioural problems; problems at school; trust issues; lack of self esteem; difficulties making and keeping friends; and in the long term may prevent the Child have from forming and maintaining healthy adult relationships.

Early intervention and the implementation of a Parenting Plan that promotes the safety and healthy adjustment of the Children can help drastically reduce Parental Conflict and its damaging effects on Children.

Intake & Mediation sessions

After your initial enquiry a fully qualified, experienced and Nationally Accredited PFDR Mediator will set up a time for a pre-mediation meeting, also called an ‘intake session’. This is necessary step that is required at law in order to assess your unique circumstances and suitability for mediation. If mediation is suitable then your PFDR Mediator will invite your ex-partner to a similar pre-mediation meeting. If your particular circumstances are assessed as being suitable for Mediation after meeting with your ex-partner, a mutually suitable time can be scheduled for the Mediation session. PFDR will then work with both parties to facilitate a mutually agreeable resolution of your dispute. If your PFDR mediator assesses your circumstances as being unsuitable for Mediation, they can issue a Section 60I certificate under the Family Law Act so you may proceed to Family Court. While there is no limit on the number of mediation sessions that a couple may participate in, it can take a little as one session to resolve either a Parenting or a Property dispute where the parties are reasonably amicable and the circumstances are not too complex.

Agreement

If you and your ex-partner reach agreement this can be documented into a Parenting Plan; Financial Settlement or Property Agreement. This agreement can then be made into a legally binding Consent Order when filed with the Family Court. If you fail to reach agreement Perth Family Dispute Resolution Mediators are registered Family Dispute Resolution Practitioners with the Attorney Generals Department and as such are authorised to issue Section 60I Certificates so that the parties may proceed to Family Court.