Ending Relationships  

Family Mediation – sorts your separation and divorce quickly and co-operatively. 
 
Family mediation saves time and money and is more constructive than court. We can see your children, so their wishes and feelings can be taken into account in your decision-making. If you want to sort out a financial settlement, then our specialist lawyer mediators can help you and give you the legal information you need to settle matters. 

Mediation works better than a legal battle 

We help you to agree things you have been arguing about for ages. You share the costs of a much faster process – so it makes sense to try mediation first and only consider other, more expensive and slower processes, if mediation doesn’t work. Often, the legal costs exceed the difference you are arguing over, so mediation is not only much quicker, it is much more affordable. 

Divorce and Separation – Emotional and Psychological Aspects 

Often the grieving that can follow the end of a relationship can be equal to bereavement. The loss of the relationship and getting used to being alone – all may conspire to give you a tough time. How long recovery takes depends on whether you are relieved or angry at the break up and whether it was a shock or expected – as well as who initiated it. Generally, it takes time to get used to separation. Counselling may help you speed this up – see what we say about this below. 

Why ending a bad relationship can still feel so painful 

You may have had a sad, even tragic relationship – and be glad it is over – you may even have ended it yourself – so why do you feel so low? A host of things can conspire to pull you down. A loss of dreams and facing the future alone can feel frightening and lonely. The considerable adjustments required in every aspect of your life are hard and exhausting. Just when at your lowest ebb, you may have to move and have your life turned upside-down and get used to having less money. You may have less time with your children and also have to deal with lost relationships with other people. You grieve and grief hurts. Change is hard. 

Bringing a Co-Habitation to an end 

Ending a co-habitation has very different legal consequences are very different to ending a marriage (apart from child support, which is the same irrespective of being married or not). If you were married a spouse may get additional maintenance for themselves and this is not normally the case with separated co-habitees. Under the Children Act, the Court has the power to settle money in a property for the child to be housed during their minority. That settled property, or share in property, is used as the child’s home while they grow up and it eventually passes back to the parent who provided it. Sometimes the Court orders a lump sum to be paid to meet other cost. How much (if anything) is paid in this way, and how it is paid, depends on your situation. 

Feeling and being depressed, sleepless and ill following separation 

Major life events such as separation, divorce, moving home or job and changes in your close relationships and living arrangements are all very stressful individually. When you split up, you’ll be facing a constellation of changes which can cause depression and/or insomnia or a variety of other health problems. This is nothing to be ashamed about, it is human and medical advice should be sought and sometimes counselling will help. You will work through it all and recover just be a bit easy on yourself and don’t expect too much too soon. 

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Child Maintenance 

If you have children and you split up then child maintenance will normally be payable. This is the same whether you were married or co-habiting. 
 
You are encouraged to try and agree this, but if you can’t, then the Child Maintenance Service or CMS will assess the absent parent for child support if the parent caring for the children asks them to do so. 
 
This is the online calculator that will help you work it out. 

The Tool Kit 

Think of a tool box, different implements do different jobs. Court can force an outcome - though it may not be what you want. Lawyers are highly trained specialists in litigation, so if you have to go to court, they are invaluable. Some lawyers are good path-finders, some good at evaluation and measuring/assessing, but you each have to pay your own and they often will disagree on what you should both do and this is at your expense. A counsellor can be like a lens and is trained to help you see and understand what is going on for you emotionally and psychologically, so helps you to raionalise the past and come to terms with the present. 
 
A mediator is able to use a range of tools, depending on your needs. The cost of their intervention is shared between you and you brief them together to help you sort things out and get a workable settlement fast. So you might think of them as a combination tool, adaptable and able to orchestrate the use of other specialists at shared cost and their express brief is to help you agree, not fight. This keeps costs down.