What is family mediation?
Family mediation is a process of managing conflicts that arise within a family. It is carried out by a mediator, an impartial professional specialised in this type of crisis (psychologist, social worker, etc.). The aim of mediation is to achieve consensual decisions and fair agreements for the benefit of all parties involved in the conflict. To this end, the mediator offers assistance and guidance to the members affected by the family crisis, facilitating dialogue and communication to achieve a consensus between everyone as harmoniously as possible, avoiding emotional damage to the more fragile members of the family, such as children.
Why use a family mediation service?
- Family mediation is offered as a way to resolve conflicts arising from:
- Parental disagreements in a divorce, about the child's education or where the child will live, for example
- Disputes between parents and children
- Disagreement between siblings regarding the care of family members
- Contact between grandparents and grandchildren
- Family arguments about financial matters
- Family arguments about family business matters
- Communication problems between family members
- Adoption and foster care issues
Mediation can take place either at the beginning of the dispute or at any stage of the dispute, even after a judicial process has begun.
What does family mediation involve?
Conflict resolution through family mediation is based on empowering the participants to make decisions, always with the aim of building consensus. The first session consists of explaining what mediation is about, establishing the issues to be resolved and agreeing on what information needs to be provided by the two parties. In the following sessions, experts such as lawyers, psychologists, etc. may be asked for their opinions.
The sessions will consist of discussing the issues raised, after first hearing the participants’ points of view, and different options will be developed and negotiated in order to reach an agreement.
Preparing for family mediation
Before deciding on family mediation, it is important that both parties are aware of what mediation is about and that they undertake it voluntarily, otherwise it will be difficult to reach any kind of agreement. The participants should also be clear about the issues they want to resolve, as well as the information they can provide on these issues and the options they propose.
Following family mediation
After mediation, an agreement containing all the points agreed on must be drawn up. This obliges both parties to comply with the agreement, provided that it meets all the formality requirements.