Family Mediation: a cost-effective alternative to court action

20 Jan 2022 | Lisa Pepper

Mediation is increasingly important for our clients in their efforts to resolve children and financial issues divorce. This week (17 to 21 January) is Family Mediation Week in the UK, with separating and divorcing couples being reminded of the benefits of mediation to avoid costly court action.

The specialist family mediators at Osbornes have significant experience in supporting separating and divorcing couples in resolving their issues – in person and remotely via Zoom where required.

We have specialists who are leading mediators and highly skilled in successfully mediating for high net worth couples and where the parties own assets abroad.

What is mediation on divorce?
Mediation is a non-court process involving an independent mediator, such as an experienced family mediation lawyer, who facilitates discussions between the parties around the key issues of finances, property and children, and helps them agree a resolution.

Mediation enables you to remain in control;  you cannot be forced to agree to anything, and you can call a halt to the process or the session whenever you wish.  The mediation sessions can be conducted by Zoom if that is easier for you, although we recommend you and your ex are not in the same home when attending the session.

If you reach an agreement with the other person, your mediator will explain how this agreement can be made legally binding.

If mediation breaks down or you cannot come to a mutually agreeable resolution, the mediator will discuss with you the other options regarding a resolution such as Arbitration or court.

Separating couples should consider trying to agree matters via mediation because of the many advantages over taking court action.

In most cases you will, in any case, be expected to take initial steps to find out about mediation before you can start court proceedings – but you cannot be forced to go down this route.

It’s important to bear in mind that even if you would prefer mediation, your ex may resist – in which case it is not an option (unless they change their mind).

What’s the benefit of family mediation?
Mediation is all about maintaining communication and working to resolve issues directly with the help of a neutral, impartial mediator. The key benefits of family mediation include:

  • Mediation is significantly cheaper than going to court
  • It is far quicker and less stressful than going to court
  • You maintain control, rather than relinquishing control to a family Judge who makes the final decisions.
  • Mediation takes place in a safe environment. This means you do not even have to be in the same room as the other party if you feel unsafe.
  • Mediation is a flexible process. Court proceedings are inflexible with strict rules as to the process and the deadlines.

How we can help
We have highly skilled mediators who can talk you through the process and help you avoid expensive and potentially long-running court proceedings.  Two of our mediators are ranked in Band 1 in Chambers and Partners for Family Alternative Dispute Resolution Services and Band 2 in The Legal 500.  Lisa Pepper is also a collaborative lawyer and David Leadercramer is an Arbitrator and Private FDR Judge.

To speak with Lisa or her team please call or complete the form below.

Share this article

Contact

Contact Lisa today

For a free initial conversation call 0207 485 8811

Email us Send us an email and we’ll get back to you






    • "She has a good way of talking to clients in an empathetic way and is also a highly recommended mediator."

      Chambers UK 2022

    • "One of the most amiable, friendly and talented lawyers in London... she has impressed me as someone who fights my corner but also understands the importance of resolving issues without unnecessary escalation. She is calm and reassuring."

      Chambers UK 2022

    • Lisa Pepper – very down to earth and approachable.

      Legal 500 2022

    • "Lisa Pepper was recommended to me as non-nonsense and able to help me with a difficult and confrontational divorce. She more than lived up to that – she was practical, collected and always available with a clear opinion and suggestions of how to move forwards. She also was open and helpful about costs and how to mitigate them"

      Legal 500 2021

    • "Lisa Pepper is an outstanding mediator. She is very skilled and has an empathetic and professional approach which is comforting for clients. She never imposes her own view but is even handed and provides helpful guidance to clients so that they can make empowered decisions"

      Legal 500 2021

    • "Lisa Pepper has built up a very impressive mediation practice. She is very engaging and easy to relate to. She embodies mediation in the sense that she approaches her case in a very non-judgmental fashion and can quickly gain the confidence of those with whom she is mediating"

      Legal 500 2021

    • "Lisa Pepper is a brilliant mediator who produces results. She is effective at resolving matters without the need for the parties to engage in expensive and protracted litigation"

      Legal 500 2021

    • "Lisa Pepper is a fantastic mediator. She is fair, robust when she needs to be, and finds a way of facilitating agreements in the hardest of cases. Her guidance is spot on. She has an approachable and constructive mediation style"

      Legal 500 2021

    • "She has impressed me as someone who fights my corner but also understands the importance of resolving issues without unnecessary escalation. She is calm and reassuring."

    • "Her mediation practice is exceptional; she is also a great solicitor and has a breadth of skill which is really useful."

      Chambers UK 2021

    • Lisa Pepper is extremely approachable and this shines through in the outcomes she achieves from mediation. She makes clients feel at ease, which enables them to feel empowered to resolve matters amicably and find a creative outcome which many mediators may have overlooked.

      Legal 500 2020 - Lisa Pepper

    • Lisa Pepper is building a very strong mediation practice at very competitive rates and is able to build a rapport quickly with almost anyone.

      Legal 500 2020 - Lisa Pepper

    • Lisa Pepper loves her work and has a very sensible head on her. That means her practice is thriving and rightly so.

      Legal 500 2020 - Lisa Pepper

    • Lisa Pepper is very thorough in her preparation and has super personal skills to put parties in mediation at ease

      Legal 500 2020 - Lisa Pepper

    • Lisa Pepper – good litigator, very friendly and approachable but tough, “straight bat” with the opposition. Can steer a client deftly to settle when he should.

      Legal 500 2020 - Lisa Pepper

    • Lisa Pepper gave me clear, level-headed and sensible advice during her handling of my divorce, and she demonstrated excellent understanding of the relevant law. She was on my side but fair and pragmatic, and her advice was always given with an eye to what was both equitable and achievable, and in line with the collaborative approach I’d wanted.

      Client Review

    • Lisa Pepper is particularly recognised for her role as a mediator in complex cross-border disputes. Her practice also includes handling prenuptial agreements and issues arising from the dissolution of civil partnerships.

      Chambers UK

    • "Lisa Pepper is "caring and considerate of the issues behind a matter, and will speak directly if she feels clients need that advice."

      Chambers UK

    • "The very personable and client-focused Lisa Pepper."

      The Legal 500

    • "Lisa Pepper somehow manages to get parties to settle on matters where there isn’t much hope to start out with."

      The Legal 500

    • "Lisa can handle the large and complicated cases but takes equal care with the smaller cases. She is a highly skilled mediator who is a consummate professional."

      The Legal 500

    • Lisa Pepper is a skilled collaborative lawyer. Her instinct is always to resolve matters without compromising her clients’ interests.

      Legal 500

    • Lisa Pepper is always looking for a solution and has a very sympathetic approach to clients. She is highly regarded for her collaborative law practice.

      Chambers UK

    • Lisa Pepper deals with separation proceedings and leave to remove cases. Sources describe her as "a great person to work with: constructive, helpful and always infectiously happy.

      Chambers UK

    • Lisa Pepper is a noted collaborative lawyer, and recently acted successfully on a client's leave to remove application to Australia.

      Legal 500

    Insights from Lisa PepperVIEW ALL

    1. 6.5.2022

      My ex has cut me off during divorce

      Unfortunately, it is far too common that when a client says it’s over, their spouse with the “purse strings”...

      Read more
    2. 6.5.2022

      How the Court views loans from parents during...

      A frequent issue in financial divorce cases is a loan from a spouse’s parent, often to pay legal fees,...

      Read more
    3. 12.4.2022

      Mediation or Arbitration: What’s best for me?

      Few divorcing couples want to end up in court, which is why mediation and arbitration are faster and more effective...

      Read more
    4. 11.4.2022

      Divorcing couples reaching financial settlement through Private FDR

      The Runaway Advantages of the Private FDR Our specialist lawyers are keen to ensure our divorcing clients achieve cost-effective outcomes...

      Read more
    5. 28.2.2022

      Divorce applications shut down from 31 March 2022

      From last year all divorce petitions in England and Wales were to be submitted to the court using the court...

      Read more
    6. 20.1.2022

      Family Mediation: a cost-effective alternative to court action

      Mediation is increasingly important for our clients in their efforts to resolve children and financial issues divorce. This week (17 to 21...

      Read more
    7. family in poppy field
      18.1.2022

      6 cases that shape a private children dispute

      Family disputes involving children can be particularly emotive, which is why our expert children lawyers work tirelessly to understand how...

      Read more
    8. father and son
      13.12.2021

      Who Pays Child Maintenance?

      Child maintenance is regular, reliable financial support that helps towards a child’s everyday living costs. The Child Maintenance Service (...

      Read more
    9. 9.12.2021

      Are irreconcilable differences grounds for divorce?

      If you have come across this article it may have been as a result of an online search to see...

      Read more
    10. 9.12.2021

      Negotiating financial settlements in divorce

      Costly and acrimonious divorces: a lesson in what not to do  If you’re determined to pursue your financial claims...

      Read more
    11. 25.11.2021

      Child arrangements for going abroad when separated

      I am separated from my spouse – can I take the children abroad on holiday? The answer to this question is...

      Read more
    12. 9.11.2021

      Keeping social media out of divorce proceedings

      We’ve recently seen the playing out on twitter and Instagram of the high-profile separation of actor Ioan Gruffudd and...

      Read more
    13. 9.11.2021

      I helped build my spouse’s career

      What is the impact on our divorce settlement? It’s been almost two years since The Da Vinci Code author...

      Read more
    14. negotiation
      9.11.2021

      How to speed up a divorce

      6 steps to speed up the divorce process For many people, once they have made the decision that their marriage is...

      Read more
    15. 9.11.2021

      6 cases that shape your divorce settlement

      Part of what makes our divorce lawyers experts in their field is knowing what way a judge is likely to...

      Read more
    16. father and children
      10.8.2021

      Child Maintenance: When is capital, income?

      Reading a recent case from the Child Maintenance Tribunal, I considered it worth flagging up that the Child Maintenance Rules...

      Read more
    17. 21.7.2021

      Child arrangements affected by pandemic travel restrictions

      International families experiencing long separation periods from children As pandemic restrictions continue to limit overseas travel, increasing numbers of separated...

      Read more
    18. 27.4.2021

      Divorce in your 60s – The Financial Implications

      How common is a divorce in your 60s? The latest divorce figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) show...

      Read more
    19. father and son
      11.3.2021

      Financial responsibilities of father on divorce

      What are the financial responsibilities of a father on divorce? The period drama Bridgerton, the runaway success of the winter,...

      Read more
    20. 5.3.2021

      Contesting a prenuptial agreement

      Kanye West and Kim Kardashian are getting a divorce after nearly seven years of marriage.  According to reports, Kim filed...

      Read more
    21. 24.2.2021

      Welfare of Child Remains Priority for Courts In...

      If press reports are to be believed, the Kim Kardashian /Kanye West split will not lead to a custody battle...

      Read more
    22. london houses
      9.2.2021

      When can you claim PPR Relief on more...

      Family lawyers are familiar with ‘Mesher Orders’ where the court orders that as part of the financial settlement on divorce,...

      Read more
    23. 26.10.2020

      5 top tips to finding the best London divorce...

      Finding the right lawyer to advise you on one of the most traumatic changes in your life, is a serious...

      Read more
    24. 5.10.2020

      Lockdown rush to cohabitation leaves couples lacking financial...

      When the lockdown was announced many couples had to make a rushed decision to move in together or face months...

      Read more

    VIEW ALL