Instead of heading off to court to settle their divorce,
separating couples now ‘cogitate, calculate and consider’ their options,
according to dispute resolution specialists at National Family Mediation.
Staff at National Family Mediation have seen the number of
calls to their telephone helpline more than double in the past year, as figures
from children’s court advisory service Cafcass show big falls in numbers of
people beginning private law cases in court during a similar
Whilst the number of new private law cases fell by almost a
third between April 2014 and March 2015, National Family Mediation took an
average of over 3,400 calls in each month from January and June 2015, up from
1,600 calls each month during the same period in 2014.
'The cuts to legal aid mean the routes separating couples are
taking as they try to reach settlements are becoming more convoluted,' says Jane
Robey, CEO of National Family Mediation.
'Before the legal aid cuts, solicitors would very often
provide separating couples with some legal advice, and refer them to family
mediation to reach vital settlements on property, finance and
It may be that the government’s policy, to divert people
away from the legal process to mediate instead, is actually beginning to work.
Couples are increasingly self-researching their options, and this is reflected
the huge increase in calls to dispute resolution specialists on our 0300 4000
636 telephone helpline.
Our experience tells us people are cogitating, calculating
and considering their next move. Our experts are helping more families in crisis
than ever before and it’s a challenge to meet the soaring
People who want to find out more about how family mediation
can help them after divorce or separation can call 0300 4000 636 or visit www.nfm.org.uk
Cafcass statistics showing the numbers of new private law
cases can be found here