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A seismic change in ethos and practice

Date:15 APR 2024
Third slide

Caroline Bowden Consultant/Mediator Anthony Gold Solicitors

A Rebooted Part 3 in force on 29 April 2024

The Part 3 rules have been reworked to make sure non-court dispute resolution ('NCDR') options are considered at all times where appropriate. The ambitious intention is to change habits and mindsets so that with robust judicial case-management and scrutiny families that should not be in court are routinely steered elsewhere.  

The key changes are:

  • Fewer reasons not to attend a MIAM especially:
    • with a tighter definition of previous NCDR;
    • delay-based hardship now only linked to significant financial hardship;
    • as MIAMs can be online inaccessibility exemptions are reduced.
  • Domestic violence changed to domestic abuse.
  • Abolition of MIAM exemptions linked to non-attendance of the respondent.
  • Abolition of all mediator-granted exemptions. 
  • Proof of a MIAM exemption will be needed.
  • Earlier scrutiny of MIAM attendance or the exemption claimed.
  • Constant court scrutiny of views on NCDR via a standard form before all first hearings and otherwise.
  • Use the natural gaps in hearings for a judge to encourage later MIAM attendance or NCDR.
  • Beefed-up cost orders in financial proceedings for failure to consider NCDR.
  • Rules about how mediators cover triage...

Read the full article here.