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Hi, has anyone got any idea whether spouses can attend mediation?

Reason I'm asking is that at my husband's last one his ex agreed to reinstate the shared care, however she later claimed they had not come to an agreement. The mediation case notes proved that they had come to an agreement, but not what its terms were. Putting him back almost at go.

Now that he has me on his side, I'd like to go as a witness so that if she does the same, it's easier to show what she's done. Am I entitled to attend? And if I am, does that mean her bogany boyfriend (who always makes violent threats) will be there also? I don't want to attend purely to inflame anything but want my husband to have corroboration afterwards of what was agreed or in dispute. Can't see how else to achieve it. We can't afford any more family lawyers.

Any advice from people who know is welcome.


Thanks, Sunnyside.
I don't believe so… The mediations are generally between the two parties (All the cases I have dealt with have been) and some centres have child inclusive mediation if the children are older. One of the issues with mediation is that there is a fairly extensive "Cooling Off" period similar to buying a car. If you change your mind you can basically walk away. In any mediations I have done I generally get an agreement prepared during the various sessions that both parties have agreed to and then have both sign off the document BEFORE they depart. Various mediation operators have different systems. Some give the base white board list of issues to take away and think over and come back to discuss areas that can't be agreed. Also take a look under the guide area on the site at Parenting Plans and Orders by Consent and look at the differences. A decent parenting plan can be relatively lengthy. If there is doubt that a parenting plan or mediated settlement will be adhered to then work on some orders by consent.      

Executive Secretary - Shared Parenting Council of Australia
 Was my post helpful? If so, please let others know about the FamilyLawWebGuide whenever you see the opportunity
 
There are more negative reasons that are associated with other people attending mediation than there are positive, in the state I live you are not allowed to attend mediation with another party unless a lawyer is required by the type of mediation as depicted in legal aid mediation.

Well considered is the negative influence another person could have on either of the parents with regards to the parent agreeing or feeling bullied into an agreement.

If you consider the cooling off period you will understand that even if you do witness what is said it will be of no benefit.

Human nature has us wanting to protect our partners and their interests, this also has us believing their truth, if you consider the other parents support person will be of the same mind you see the logic of refusing more than just the parents concerned to attend mediation.

You would be better sent spending the time to help with the next part of the process and keep him positive and supported which I'm sure you will do.

All best D4E
How long is the 'cooling off period'?

He'll win hands down in court so it's probably going to be fine but I wish we had some finality, the woman is beyond delusional if she thinks that she can violently assault the kids in front of independent witnesses and it won't impact the BIC considerations. It's just so frustrating to have her breaking their little hearts and trying to be mature about it and pick up the pieces time after time. Only to then have her refusing to let them leave her place when it's our time if they or we have done anything to annoy her recently - some people don't deserve kids.

Sorry for the outburst, been up half the night with a 5 year old whose mother told her she doesn't love her anymore   :(
A cooling off period is as long as it takes until court orders are issued. There is a probability that they may seek to change their mind every time he goes to mediation until eventually a certificate is issued, there may be a need to strongly suggest a certificate is supplied so the process can move on.

The court is still like rolling the dice so there are no assurities simply educated guesses providing procedure is followed.

It will always be an emotional battle and even with orders this will continue and thats why support is essential to help people through the mind field of what they can change themselves to make a difference, this does not always mean changing the other parent or trying to force change upon this other parent but rather doing the best with what you have.

Unfortunately the system necessitates a set procedure is followed and this means frustration for many but the end result is compliance and the sooner this is realised the sooner attention can be focused on legalities and preparation. Although this may sound harsh no offence was intended it's a simple reflection of what happens.

All best D4E   
Sunnyside said
I wish we had some finality, the woman is beyond delusional if she thinks that she can violently assault the kids in front of independent witnesses and it won't impact the BIC considerations.
Do I assume a complaint has been lodged to local police, a file number advised and they attended the incident in question? Any reference in an affidavit needs some quantifiable evidence of fact. Clearly as family violence is involved the Mediation centre should be aware of this, a certificate immediately issued and you should be in front of a no nonsense Federal Magistrate through the Federal Magistrates Court… I am not sure why you are making what appears to be a fairly simple route so complicated and so lengthy. D4E has also made a very good point.
D4E said
Unfortunately the system necessitates a set procedure is followed and this means frustration for many but the end result is compliance and the sooner this is realised the sooner attention can be focused on legalities and preparation.
Time to get this all moving along a bit I think.

Executive Secretary - Shared Parenting Council of Australia
 Was my post helpful? If so, please let others know about the FamilyLawWebGuide whenever you see the opportunity
 
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