Legal aid is no longer available for most people going though a separation or divorce. However, legal aid is not dead and is still available for mediation, subject to financial eligibility assessment.
Mediation is an alternative way to resolve issues, where a qualified and independent mediator helps couples make their own arrangements for their children or dividing their assets without the need to go to court.
Cathy Swan, a mediation specialist at Shropshire solicitors Wace Morgan, explains that this way of dealing with matters reduces conflict and hopefully helps the couple to keep a civilised relationship. It also takes about a quarter of the time of court proceedings and could be eight times cheaper.
“Mediation is not right for everyone and we carry out careful individual assessments to ensure that it is the right way forward.
“However, many couples are surprised how issues can be narrowed and how much progress can be possible in a short space of time. The advantage of being able to speak directly to each other in a controlled and neutral environment is immense and can lead to great progress even where couples are not optimistic that they will be able to resolve matters,” she stresses.
For more information contact Cathy Swan on 01743 280 158