Is matrimonial mediation right for you?

Cost effective

The Breakdown of a marriage or relationship, particularly when children are involved is a life-altering experience and one in which parties feel confused about their rights and ongoing responsibilities and worried about financial impact for the whole family. Dividing one household into two puts enormous emotional strain on the couple and can create genuine worry and fear about the future. Adding to this the breakdown of effective and helpful communication, tends to leave parties believing the only way to resolve issues is through legal process however, this is costly and time consuming.

When both parties appoint a mediator, they are pooling their resources and ensuring that lines of communication stay open. The mediator can discuss the parties’ financial situation with them and agree on a costing and payment plan that is manageable and reduces stress.The mediator can then help the parties discuss their financial needs in a healthy, and collaborative environment ensuring that the needs of all family members are discussed and considered. By participating cooperatively in a joint mediation process parties can not only save themselves 1000’s of pounds in legal fees, they can also reach practical and suitable financial agreement that meets their specific needs directly and head on.
Mediation offers a less damaging way to legal resolution

Time Effective

In Matrimonial breakdown, every issue seems urgent, particularly when communication has broken down. Finding a suitable second home for one of the parties, arranging child visits with the absent parent, organising school holidays and child care while both parents are working are all urgent and pressing matters that require good communication and collaboration to resolve, but when that communication and lack of collaboration naturally arises, all sense of urgency disappears. A mediator is a fast way of reaching agreement on each item, in a systematic, calm and process driven way. The mediator can help parties learn decision making skills together,  can help them use various parenting apps available to support positive co-parenting and help them make important decisions far quicker than waiting for a court date and judicial decision. In resolving matters in a supported and time effective environment, a lot of the pressure and confusion surrounding family breakdown naturally starts to dissolve, an added benefit of dealing with matters head on with an efficient and effective mediator.
Mediation is better for children than litigation

Supportive and non-judgemental environment

Our extensive hands-on experience mediating couples going through separation and divorce has given us the clear understanding that the breakdown of a family is  a highly emotive, worrying, tiring, stressful and distressing  experience which can trigger feelings of  anger, paranoia, mistrust, fear and hurt pride. It is vital  that  everyone has the opportunity to process  their hurt, frustration and anger in a supportive and  psychologically safe environment. Fiona provides this safe space for her clients to express their views in a non judgmental and confidential setting. She is always willing to roll up her sleeves and help her clients navigate the conflict away from triggered emotions towards practical steps of  rebuilding broken relationships, improving communication and re-aligning respectful behaviours.  While expressing emotions is important, the mediation process helps the parties focus on what is important, which is transitioning out of negative conflict and towards a  positive and practical future involving co-operation and co-parenting.

Party shaped solution guided by experienced mediators

There is no one size fits all approach to resolving conflict and Fiona knows  that it is vital to get to know the parties, understand their needs and identify their fears and worries early on. Mediation also teaches us that a party led solution is one that is more likely to be agreed to, implemented and stuck to! Our mediator  gets to the heart of the family’s needs, taking interest in the parties' hopes for the future and helping them find ways to make those hopes a realistic reality. Matters that have been successfully resolved through mediation with Fiona include:

• Agreement regarding co-parenting schedules
• Time with Dad
• Cross jurisdictional co-parenting (when a party wants to move to another country)
• Agreeing financial contribution for children
• Agreeing spousal maintenance
• Discussing children’s schooling
• Explaining the divorce to young children
• Managing teenagers during separation and divorce

When the breakdown involves children, Fiona has access to resources to help the family consider a “non-traditional”  reality and helps the family members consider all the different elements of collaborative co-parenting or finance management, including reaching agreement on holidays, time with grandparents, school pick up and drop off and agreeing “big ticket” items such as phone usage and school trips . Fiona brings her own empathy and experience as a parent, to address the challenges of parenting (let alone co-parenting) with the separating couple and  encourages creative, practical thinking to  support the  parties in exploring  options for resolution in detail with humour, patience and respect for all around the table.  No problem is too big to face the systematic mediation process.

Private, confidential and legally binding

The mediation process is entirely confidential and “without prejudice”. This means that all conversations that take place during the mediation process, with the mediator and between the parties, cannot be disclosed in court proceedings (without all parties’ consent). This enables the parties to speak openly, explore options for resolution and exchange information that they may not feel inclined to disclose in traditional legal proceedings. When the parties do come to an agreement, Fiona will help them discuss it with their lawyers and draw up a final mediation agreement. This final agreement will be legally binding and can be enforced by a court. In divorce process, courts ordinarily encourage the parties to try mediation, therefore going to mediation before commencing divorce proceedings  will put the parties ahead in what is usually a long and drawn out process.
Mediation allows all parties to find a suitable agreement

Why Work With Fiona Young?

Fiona Young Mediator
The first mediations Fiona handled after qualifying were matrimonial mediations, since that time she has guided many couples towards resolution and calm acceptance of the marriage breakdown. Being married and a mother herself, she has first hand experiences on the pressures and stresses that can strain a relationship and while she is always careful not to make assumptions or judgements, she can empathise well with both the couple and help them to navigate and understand their emotional responses to the situations they find themselves in.
Additionally, as a lawyer, Fiona is able to guide the parties through the mine-field that is the court system, but at the same time offering pragmatic and practical options to help  avoid costly legal process. Fiona is experienced in bringing couples to the table (literally) and re-opening lines of communication to help steer a safe path through emotion and hurt and towards resolution. She does this slowly and systematically, taking time to get to know each party first individually and then agreeing a time frame for joint meetings.  With a deep desire to help couples find workable and practical solutions to their matrimonial issues, Fiona will use every tool she has at her disposal to help couples explore the best solution for them and their children.

Fiona says:
“Being a good mediator is all about having life experience. It is about meeting all sorts of different people and liking them for who they are. It’s also about understanding and appreciating cultural differences, age differences and difference of perception. Travelling to and working in different countries has helped me with keeping an open mind but the most important mediation training I have had is being a wife and mother - there is no better place to practice mediation skills than between small squabbling siblings or with demanding teenagers!”.

This is more than just a method of conflict resolution. It is training on how to successfully navigate a world where conflict, disagreement and problems are all around us all the time.

How Does it Work?


Contact Fiona to Talk about your needs

If you have a conflict you consider may be suited to mediation, drop us an email or click this link.

We will contact you and ask you some questions and listen to your story. There is no obligation to commit to mediation we will just hear your version of events and listen to the outcome you would like to achieve.


Engage the other parties

At your request we will contact the other party and ask them if they would like to participate. If they do we will also have a call with them and hear their side of the story. The mediator remains neutral throughout regardless of which party approaches first.If both parties agree to participate in the mediation process a contract and confidentiality agreement will be provided setting out terms, conditions and payment terms.


Meet with the other parties and your mediator

The mediator will spend some time talking to each party individually and will then when appropriate bring the parties together for a joint session. This will either be in person in a neutral location or using internet technology (zoom). During the joint session the mediator will encourage the parties to listen to each other and brainstorm ideas for resolution. As the parties begin to come to agreement the mediator will start to formulate a mediation agreement.


Agree to the mutually focussed outcome

When a formal agreement is reached the mediator will allow the parties some time to review it (if necessary they can seek legal advice at this stage). When the parties are happy with the agreement the mediator will draw up a final version and arrange for the parties to sign. This will be a legally binding agreement which the parties can show to the court if necessary.

The mediator will ensure that any payments that are due to be made are timetabled - but the mediator cannot receive or hold monies for either party. If at any time after the mediation the parties enter into further disagreement they can revisit the issue with the mediator or attend further mediation sessions.

How long does the process take?

The idea of a mediation is to resolve matter promptly and encourage a pragmatic problem solving dynamic that relies on momentum and enthusiasm. Accordingly the mediator will aim to drive the matter forward as promptly as possible. In real terms most mediations take around 12 - 15 hours of mediation time to resolve.

What does it cost?

The Mediator charges £200 per hour. The mediator will encourage the parties to split the costs between them (but it is for the parties to decide who pays)  and will require advance payment in advance of joint mediation sessions.

What our clients thought...

"Thanks for helping me . Had a positive meeting with colleague . She has agreed to take on someone to help.. I cannot thank you enough . Have gone from being very low to more upbeat"
"Thank you for the notes from the mediation process. I found the experience very therapeutic"
“Thank you for always hearing me out, I feel heard and seen”

Contact Fiona for a free, no-obligation chat

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