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No fault divorce and mediation for climate protests

With the continued backlog of cases mediation is even more so now than ever the best choice to find a resolution for your dispute. Get your dispute resolved now while you can’t go anywhere you can really concentrate on what’s important and what deserves your time and energy.


Northwest Mediation continues to use Zoom, Skype and FaceTime as well as the phone and emails to resolve disputes should we add we also do live in person mediation too! So please do not feel that you cannot contact us if you would like to mediate but wish to do so remotely.

No fault divorce, something that when I was doing my law degree in the 1990s was “coming soon” has finally arrived.


From 6/4/22 the changes to divorce law mean that there will no longer be a need to claim one of the 5 grounds for divorce applies, the law now recognises that if a marriage is at an end then making couples blame one or the other only adds to the pain of the situation. I don’t accept it whittles away at the sanctity of marriage, having come from what in the seventies they called a “broken home” and a father who divorced 3 times I think I can safely say it’s not as if marriage has been a solid institution for a number of years.


The new rules also end the use of the phrases “decree nisi” and “decree absolute” only 23 years after civil (non family) courts stopped using Latin, now there will be a 20 week period between beginning proceedings (online) and requesting the conditional order and a further 6 weeks before the final order can be requested.


The courts are still in a mess and matters are bound to be delayed however your best chance of getting to the end point with all children and finance matters agreed without a conflict of court is mediation, so give us a call we can help you through all the difficulties. No fault divorce is intended to reduce conflict so ensure you do all you can to keep matters civil and mediate.


Marriage is a wonderful institution but who wants to live in a broken institution? – not quite Groucho Marx


Other legislation news in India where despite the idea of ADR and mediation having been enshrined in court guidance for years it has yet to gain traction to reduce the case loads of court (oh how familiar that sounds to those of us operating under the England & Wales system in the UK).


Now the country is bringing in further legislation in the of the Mediation Bill which will promote and encourage the use of mediation pre-issue and during proceedings. Unlike our system the Mediation Bill will mandate mediation prior to proceedings, far more akin to MIAM than the current “yes we talked about it” box on the directions questionnaire.


The bill sets up a mediation council and also makes mediated settlements enforceable as court orders. In our system I always ensure that any settlement agreement made in civil mediation with the help of Northwest Mediation is an enforceable contract but having them made enforceable just like a court order would be great. (NB the agreements in family mediation are not enforceable as contracts and need placing in order form by a court to be enforceable but part of the thrust of family mediation is to stop the need for orders and help parties work together).


There are wars around the world, there are food and heating shortages at home but the overarching problem we all face and will do so for the next century at least is the climate crisis.


Short term short sighted solutions like restarting fracking to extract more planet killing fossil fuels is ridiculous (apart from the fact it will ultimately damage ground water and see the Fylde Coast slip quicker into the Irish Sea it exacerbates the problem it is looking to fix - reducing finite resources ).


It’s no surprise then that climate activism is on the rise (whether by blocking roads or zip tying yourself to a goal post by the throat) this article provides some thoughts on how mediation might assist both protestors and the police who have to protect the public (sometimes from themselves) and ensure the queen’s peace is maintained.


Mike Makin-Waite, the author of the article was part of the Keeping Our Cool initiative at COP26 (the climate conference where our notoriously sticking plaster government pretended to give a tinkers cuss whilst as illustrated in the form of Allegra Stratton swanning about in her gas guzzler or the clown prince of Number 10 flying round the country to meet tory donors they actually didn’t).


Mike and team helped protestors take time to think about their actions and better ways to engage but never stopped anyone from doing so, they did so with empathy and common sense and as a result the protests were able to be made and heard without too much risk being posed to anyone.


I applaud Mike’s approach and the fact that he heads off accusations they were naïve, they were not they were honest and open with both sides, respected the confidentiality that underlies all mediation and where they could they helped.



Some years from now when the storms are worse, the seas are higher and the winters are hotter than a deep fat fryer (prizes if you can tell me what TV show’s theme song that line is from) we’ll look back and wonder why we didn’t act, or maybe be grateful we did and it’s only as bad as this!


Either way conflict is going to increase as resources become more limited and mediation is certainly bound to continue rising (like the sea levels). Maybe vote for a non-self-interested government of charlatans next time, just a thought.


The three pillars of mediation remain it’s voluntary, it’s confidential, the mediator is independent, by using those pillars to support your work the parties keep control, save costs, save time and energy and reduce stress. Finally this one is mediation, mediator jointly appointed, areas of discussion agreed and intention to be bound by the outcome.


In person or via electronic media as we’ve said before choose to mediate early and resolve your issues effectively, timeously, and with less stress and costs than going to your solicitor so you can get out choose a different path, not quite the road less travelled but perhaps the path less adversarial. You have an interest in the outcome the sooner you get round the mediation table the quicker you can move forward and avoid the grilling a cross examination in court would put you through.


By having a deep and meaningful discussions with parties the mediator elicits what the true “red-lines” are and where there is the potential for compromise, it is with this structured period of reflection that the parties are then able to reach an accord.


The flexible nature of mediation and the possible outcomes make it an ideal way to resolve disputes in an ever-changing world and the open nature of discussions in mediation whilst remaining confidential allows all sides to engage fully in the process and understand the needs of all involved allowing parties to reach a conclusion which both sides can live with and move on.


There are so many situations which could have been resolved by early intervention of mediation it continues to surprise me the lengths the public will go to avoid referral.


Whether you need a mediator to help out with a construction matter in the Northwest, or council’s plans in Cheshire, a civil mediator in London, a commercial mediator in Manchester, a dispute resolution for your family in Liverpool, a neighbourhood mediation in Stockport, then our mediators at Northwest Mediation can help.


Mediation is cheaper, quicker and less stressful than running any case to court, it can help with any dispute whether it's an employment issue or the sale at an under value of a property, a fight with a neighbour, family issues, commercial disputes, civil mediation or inheritance, wills and probate arguments contact Northwest Mediation on 07931318347 or via email at ed.johnson@northwestmediation.co.uk

neighbour mediation; commercial dispute resolution; civil mediation; commercial dispute; corporate dispute; commercial mediator; family mediation; inheritance wills probate mediation; property mediator; civil mediator; civil litigation; fast track mediation; injury mediation


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