The role of the mediator
The FDR mediator won’t make a decision about a family dispute. They will help you to work on resolving the dispute between you and the other person or people who care for your children. The FDR mediator is there to help you focus on the needs of your children so that you can make good decisions about your children’s future. The FDR mediator will not try to get you and your partner back together again, or make judgements about who is right or wrong.
During the mediation you may come to full or partial resolution or you may not agree at all. In any situation the mediator will advise you of the next steps available to you.
Important issues to decide on during your mediation
The FDR mediator will work with you to clarify the issues you wish to discuss and help you generate possible solutions.
After your discussions, the FDR mediator will help you draw up a parenting plan which may include the following:
- how much time the children will spend with each of you
- contact arrangements for the other parent or care-giver, while the children are in your care. This may also include how the children will be changed over from one parent or caregiver to another
- how the children will be involved in special occasions, for example birthdays, Christmas, mothers’/fathers’ days
- how the children’s holidays will be arranged
- which school the children will attend
- health matters
- religious and cultural matters.
During the mediation, everyone will have time to talk, to consider suggestions, to take a break, and to talk individually to the FDR mediator before making final decisions.
The FDR mediator will help you write up the parenting plan into a mediated agreement and if you are happy with it, you will be asked to sign it.