A MIAM stands for Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting. Before mediation begins, both parties need to attend a MIAM, usually separately, to explore two elements: Information and Assessment.
Although family mediation is a voluntary process, anyone wanting to use the Court to resolve family issues will usually be asked to attend a MIAM before they submit an application, in order to consider the option of mediation. Even once a Court case has begun, a Judge may recommend the parties to attend a MIAM to find out about mediation, before any further Court hearing occurs.
There are two ways that INFORMATION (MIAM) is shared in a MIAM. Firstly, your mediator will gather information from you about your case, find out about the issues to be resolved, and anything else relevant they need to know in order to assess the suitability of mediation. This will include some discussion about the nature of your relationship with your ex partner, as well as checking out about the welfare of any children in the family. This will be conducted with the utmost sensitivity, but is essential information for your mediator to make sure that mediation is safe for everyone involved.
Secondly this is your opportunity to find out INFORMATION about family mediation as well as other forms of dispute resolution. Your mediator will explain to you how mediation works and the principles that guide the process. You will be informed of the practicalities of mediation such as where the mediation would take place, the cost, and potential number of sessions. You will also find out about what happens if mediation is not suitable or breaks down, looking at the alternative options available.
The ASSESSMENT (MIAM) element of the meeting may involve assessment for Legal Aid if you think you may be eligible and the service offers this option, such as MyMediation. Your mediator will also assess if your case is suitable for mediation. There may be several reasons why the mediator may deem the case unsuitable, for example if there is no way of getting in contact with your ex partner, or there are significant safety concerns to either party.
Once you and your ex partner have both attended your separate MIAM, your mediator will usually be in a position to decide whether the mediation process is suitable for your case. If both parties are willing and the case is suitable, your mediator will then set up a joint mediation session to enable you to move on with the family mediation process.
At MyMediation you will find experienced mediators who care and value our clients, and understand that each case is individual. We offer quick, flexible appointments and the choice of two office locations, as well as holding a Legal Aid contract. To arrange your MIAM please ring 0113 320 2288 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.