Mediator or Solicitor?
If you are considering divorce or separation and don’t know where to start, you could consider speaking to a solicitor for advice.
Solicitors on average will charge anything between £180 and £250 per hour outside of London. Some offer a fixed fee service but beware what is included as some will charge upwards of £300 just to complete the forms and submit them to the court. You will still need to pay the court fees yourself.
For suitable cases, family mediation has been proven to save separating couples hundreds and sometimes even thousands of pounds when it comes to resolving disputes over finance and property and to reach agreement over child arrangements.
Our mediators may recommend you speak to a solicitor in certain circumstances:
To discuss complex issues during mediation
Once mediation is complete
Mediation has become unsuitable
Who is going to be best to help me?
Mediators and solicitors are two very different ‘tools’ separating couples can use to help them resolve disputes. When used together, appropriately, separating couples can save money, and have a faster less adversarial resolution of their disputes compared to involving the courts in the process.
Solicitors will act for you, and you alone. They will use every resource to get you the ‘best deal for you’. They will write letters or send emails on your behalf and you may only need to see your former partner if the matter proceeds to court. You will of course pay for their time and this is sometimes billed in blocks of 7 or 10 minutes.
If you cannot reach agreement with your former partner, proceeding to court can be extremely expensive.
Solicitors will remove the emotional element when litigating between you and your former partner. This can work well in some cases but make matters worse in others.
Mediators will encourage you both to discuss what is fair and reasonable for both of you.
In cases involving children this can often create a more positive co-parenting arrangement.
Mediation can often be quicker, less stressful and much cheaper than litigation and involving the courts.
You and your former partner will be supported to reach decisions that work for both of you.
Your mediator will remain impartial at all times and ensure that the matters important to both of you are communicated effectively.
Your mediator will give you information about how to deal with financial issues, how to deal with children issues, relevant legal principles, the court process, court orders, and how to contact other agencies and specialists who may be able to help.