Couples who are splitting up will soon have to consider mediation before expensive lawyers in an attempt from the government to cut the number of expensive court battles.
A new protocol has been approved between the Ministry of justice and the judiciary, which means that from April, couples must show they have undergone at least one mediation awareness session before standing in front of a judge.
Justice Minister Jonathan Djanogly believes mediation to be a quicker, cheaper and more amicable alternative to a legal battle, especially in situations where children are involved and he hopes that the ‘taster’ mediation session will allow couples to see what the process has to offer, perhaps saving them from expensive and upsetting legal battles.
The Department of Justice believes that mediation will help separating couples to decide the terms of their divorce in a far more amicable way.
The new rules will not apply to couples who are not planning to contest the terms of their separation in court.