More separating couples are turning to the Court with their disputes about arrangements for their children. Cafcass has reported that applications they have received during April-May 2018 have continued to rise over a 5 year period, 3,513 applications were issued during the last month. Follow this link for this months records – https://www.cafcass.gov.uk/about-cafcass/research-and-data/private-law-data/
The Family Courts are creaking at the seams and the increase in applications places children in a process where the timescales are dictated by the Courts and given the current difficulties, this can have a negative impact upon the wellbeing not only in respect of the children but the parents too. The law places children at the centre of the application and orders are made which focus specifically on meeting the needs of the children. The law in the UK recognises that children benefit from the ongoing relationship with both parents following the breakdown of their family unit.
Mediation can help parents to identify solutions to their conflict and can support them to reach decisions about their children without the need to resort to the Court, where a Judge will make decisions about the future of the family. Where parents can come together and communicate about their future, family mediation works and can reduce additional stress; is significantly cheaper and quicker than the Court process.