Family law mediation services

Mediation for families in Australia

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What is mediation?

Mediation is a type of dispute resolution with the aim to resolve disputes between parties outside of the more adversarial Court system. During a meeting or series of meetings, an independent, neutral third party (known as the Mediator) leads and facilitates discussion between the parties to reach an agreement.

What is the process of mediation?

  • Parties involved in a dispute choose a Mediator, usually one with expertise in the particular area of the dispute. Our mediators have considerable family law experience in family law disputes.
  • The Mediator usually conducts an intake with each of the parties (and, if represented, also their lawyers) separately. These sessions determine the issues in dispute and help inform the best way to approach the mediation. Sometimes it might be appropriate for the parties (and their lawyers) to be in the same room attempting to resolve the issues. On other occasions, that might not be appropriate (e.g. domestic violence issues or unequal bargaining power between the parties). In those situations, it may be preferable for the Mediator to conduct the mediation in separate rooms (shuttle).

Many mediations can be conducted by a video conferencing platform such as Teams, so the parties don’t have to come into physical contact.

What happens if you don’t agree during mediation?

If you don’t agree during mediation, you’ll need to consider resolving the dispute in another manner, usually by a Court determination or an Arbitration Hearing.

However, a Court Determination or an Arbitration Hearing will preclude your ability to have a say in the outcome. The advantages of mediation are then no longer available. Let’s take a look at a few of the main benefits of mediation:

Advantages to Mediation

  • Creates a favourable climate for joint decision-making
  • Improves communication (essential for cooperation as parents)
  • Facilitates negotiations and agreements
  • Allows an opportunity to deal with all parenting and financial issues together
  • It can be organised quickly and is confidential and discreet
  • Avoids the delay, stress, costs and adversarial nature of Court proceedings

Whether you are negotiating a divorce settlement, child support arrangements, property settlements, or any other form of dispute, negotiating takes great skill and understanding. 

Having a neutral mediator can help everyone involved quickly reach an agreement. An impartial third party’s goal is to produce good results for all involved.


No. For parenting, if you sign and date the agreement, it becomes a parenting plan. Although not legally enforceable, it is disclosable to the Court and holds some weight. For property, any agreement signed is not enforceable.

One of our mediators costs $250 for an hour, per person for the intake session and a half day mediation is $800, per person.

It must be done for parenting matters before filing in the Court unless an exemption applies. It is appropriate in all matters unless there is family violence, for example. The Court want you to attempt it before heading there in all matters, unless an exemption applies.

Yes, can be done via shuttle so the parties do not need to see each other.

Australian Family Lawyers are your family law mediation experts

As family law experts and mediation family lawyers, we can sensitively help you through the process of mediation with our family dispute resolution service through The Faculty of Arbitration and Mediation (FAM), Australia’s first specialist family law dispute resolution service. 

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Why use the Faculty of Arbitration and Mediation?

Proven expertise
Three key members with 120 years of collective experience in family law.

National strength
Experienced Adjunct Faculty members, from all over Australia, are available to arbitrate or mediate family law matters.

Better timeframes
A result achieved in months, rather than years.

Law Firm of the Year

We are proud to announce we have been named as a finalist in the Australian Law Awards for Law Firm of the Years 2020, 2021 and 2022.

Award recipients represent a true cross section of the legal industry, recognising the contributions of the profession’s most senior ranks through to its rising stars.

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About Australian Family Lawyers

Our team of family mediation lawyers is on standby to help you with all your family law matters. We know this can be an emotional process, but getting clarity around these issues can help you be prepared for a long and successful relationship into the future.

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