Recent figures released by the Ministry of Justice shows that 13,029 new children cases were issued in the courts between April and June of 2017, this is a rise on the figures from last year. These applications concerned 28278 children.
These are stark figures to read. What this effectively means is that more and more parents are not managing to resolve together by co-parenting what is in the best interest of their children and are turning to the courts for help.
However whilst these figures are on the increase unfortunately there has for the same period been a reduction in the number of couples who have attended mediation assessment meetings. Although we cannot say for certainty that not all of these parents have failed to consider mediation, what we do know is that it is always far better for children if parents can resolve amicably at mediation any issues over co-parenting rather than let the courts decide.
Mediation enables parents to make the decisions together by the two people who know their children better than anyone. At Stone King we have 4 very experienced family mediators, 2 of whom are able in some circumstances to meet with the children concerned. During the mediation sessions our mediators will encourage parents to make decisions together which will benefit their children both immediately and in the future. We can help parents to consider how their communication as parents can directly impact upon their children. Parents will decide together what issues they want to talk about and the mediator will assist them with coming to decisions together.
Mediation is also one of the very small areas where legal aid is still available. Our mediators will therefore assess whether one of you may qualify for legal aid at our first mediation assessment meeting with you.