In order to encourage mediation, as from 22 April 2014 legal aid for family mediation will be available to applicants for 1980 Hague Convention child abduction proceedings without a requirement to determine the applicant's means/financial eligibility.
According to the charity, Reunite International, this will mean that the applicant parent is now eligible for legal aid to cover the costs of mediation to help resolve these cases. It is hoped that this new provision will encourage more parents to engage in mediation in these difficult circumstances, resulting in an agreed solution and avoiding lengthy contested court hearings.
Denise Carter OBE, Head of Mediation at International Family Law Group LLP, said:
'We at iflg are so pleased that legal aid is now automatically available for specialist mediation to applicant parents under the provision of the 1980 Child abduction Convention. This will give parents an opportunity to work together in the best interest of their child and make informed decision about their families future.'