What on earth is a MIAM ?
In April 2011, Mediation Information and Assessment Meetings (MIAMs) were introduced. Since that time, there has been much confusion among the people in need about what MIAMs really are as well as when MIAMs should be undertaken.
To provide you with some background, for many years, mediators have offered specific intake meetings to any person who is looking for a mediation process for discussing the client’s situation as well as the available options for every client in a confidential environment.
In April 2011, as the government formally introduced MIAMs, it brought up the concept of mediation being the best possible practice for any person to first attend a MIAM who considers making a court application to family law courts.
In April 2014, in yet another remarkable move, the government brought in legislation, making it compulsory for almost all family law court applicants to attend a MIAM along with a mediator before they start the court process. It may not be compulsory in case of a valid exception, such as serious domestic violence or an urgent requirement to make a court application.
This all resulted in the practice that anyone who considers to make a contested court application to the family law courts, for instance, with reference to children’s living arrangements or for finances following separation or divorce, now requires to attend a MIAM .
Also there is no obligation of attending a MIAM for a person who is simply filing to get a divorce or who is trying a resolution for matters amongst themselves or through solicitors without contesting in a court process. Often, there will be numerous benefits for both the parties attending a MIAM.
This is especially true for cases where there are assets like pensions or house, or children’s arrangements up for consideration. Apart from providing the client a chance of making sure that they are aware of every option that is open to them, MIAM could end up with much savings for both the parties with respect to time, money, and angst. It also helps them in moving forward with their lives in the best possible positive manner.
During the process of MIAM, the UK Family mediator must cover the different options that are open to the client. This ranges from the client going on with a court application to discussing the right way to contact the other party with the aim to explore the possibility to start the joint mediation process.
There are numerous cases of successful Family Mediation in .