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Child custody mediation and child mediation can help resolve differences between partners who are separating or divorcing. Talking through issues with an independent mediator can encourage you to come to a mutual decision that benefits all of the family.

How is a child’s life affected by separation?

All parents going through separation and divorce worry about how their children will be affected.

A divorce is a bereavement and children, like their parents, will experience a range of difficult feelings about the fact that their family is changing.

You will always be your child’s parent and the way in which you separate and divorce can significantly affect your child in the short and long term. Research shows that a conflictual divorce and ongoing parental conflict after separation can affect children physically, emotionally, educationally and socially throughout childhood and adolescence and into adulthood.

Co-parenting is difficult even when couples live together – but after a separation, your partner “stuff” can get mixed up with your parent “stuff” and then things can begin to feel impossible.

Children of separated parents do best when their parents can manage to work together and make it possible for them to have an easy family life across both sides of their family.

Deciding on child arrangements

“Custody” is the term that most people use when they talk about where a child will live after a divorce. In fact the legal term now is “child arrangements.”

Child arrangements – how much time children spend with each parent, where children go to school and where they will live- can be a real source of conflict and distress between separating and separated couples, and people can find themselves in court because they think that reaching an agreement will be impossible. Going to court can get parenting time written down but it can’t make you speak to each other or improve your communication – which your children really need you to do.

Meeting with a skilled family mediator can help you to start speaking with the mediator’s help. The mediator can support you both to plan the future for you and your children. We know from experience that speaking with help works.

Mediation is cost-effective and quick; if mediation is suitable for your situation its combination of cost and speed makes it hard to beat in terms of the other different ways to sort things out.

Our team of mediators contains skilled accredited mediators who have also had many years’ experience as children lawyers as well as a mediator qualified in Child Inclusive Mediation. They can guide you on the law whilst helping you reach an agreement.

How does child custody mediation work?

Your first step is to contact us and arrange a no-obligation, one to one meeting known as a MIAM (Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting) to explore with a mediator whether family mediation could be a good choice for you and your family.

You can meet us online from your own home and we help you set up the meeting.

Your children think that you are wonderful and that you can do anything – you can, and you can do this for them.

We also provide divorce, separation and financial mediation for couples who want to discuss a divorce or separation settlement without going to Court. For more information or to make an appointment contact our family team in Newcastle or South Shields by email to mary.shaw@davidgray.co.uk or on 0191 243 8163.

The David Gray Child Custody Mediation Team

Mary Shaw

Mary Shaw

Partner

Ailsa Gilhespy

Ailsa Gilhespy

Solicitor

Sukhi Patter

Sukhi Patter

Solicitor

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