Your 5 Point Guide to the new Ministry of Justice (MoJ) Voucher Scheme
What is it?
The MoJ is investing £1 million in a Family Mediation voucher scheme to support families who could benefit from help through Family Mediation. This puts Family Mediation at the heart of the family justice system, highlighting that parents should, where there are no safety issues, be aiming to find workable solutions together, and using Court only as a last resort.
Who is it for?
Families who have a dispute over child arrangements issues, whether that is working out day to day contact arrangements, or more specific issues such as relocation or decisions about education are eligible for the voucher scheme. The scheme is not based on an individual’s income.
What costs does it cover?
The first step in Family Mediation is to attend separate MIAMs (mediation information and assessment meetings). The voucher scheme does not cover this step in the process. However if both parties wish to proceed to mediation, and the mediator assesses the case as suitable, then the voucher scheme covers the joint mediation sessions up to the cost of £500 per case.
How do I apply?
Your Family Mediator will make the application on your behalf. Both participants have to agree to an application for a voucher and your written consent will be required. You will also be asked to complete a short optional monitoring form.
How long does the scheme last?
Once your Family Mediator has had confirmation that your case will be covered, then there are no restrictions on the time frame for the mediation sessions to take place. Approximately 2000 families will benefit from the scheme, however once the vouchers have been used up then the scheme will end.