family mediation questions answers

Family mediation with Untying the Knot includes an intake session with your family law mediator of about 45 minutes,  which is a separate session from your former partner. 

Your meetings with your family mediator and former partner usually go for about 3 to 4 hours per session. 

A family law mediator can help make important decisions about the future of your family. 

They can help you make an agreement about custody and parenting matters and work towards a family law property settlement. 

Most importantly, it avoids you going to the Federal Circuit and Family Court.

Mediation is a process to help you reach a family law agreement with a neutral professional mediator who facilitates settlement negotiations. 

Parents work through custody and parenting arrangements with family dispute resolution practitioners, as well as property settlement.

You can attend family dispute resolution or custody mediation without a lawyer but it is a good idea to have family law legal advice.  

Family law property settlement needs specialist family law advice.  We can refer you to a resolution-focussed lawyer who will provide advice before your mediation so you can negotiate with confidence.

It is important to be properly prepared for your family mediation to make sure that you get the best out of your session. 

Before you get family law advice from your family law specialist, think about what are the important issues that you want to discuss. 

Make a list of them and talk to your family lawyer to makes sure all your questions are answered.

We’ve also set out some practical tips to prepare for mediation.

In Australia, you cannot go to the Federal Circuit and Family Court unless you have attempted family dispute resolution (family mediation). 

There are some exceptions if safety to you or your children is an issue. 

Family mediation is now compulsory for property settlement matters, and is a good way to avoid the Court,  which should always be a last resort.

Yes!  We have family mediators in Sydney as well as Brisbane and Melbourne.

Our Brisbane family law mediators use the mediation rooms at Divorce Hub in Milton.  

They are secure and safe and accessible to public transport and parking.


Our advanced video technology enables us to conduct a family mediation anywhere in Australia.

We can also use video mediation if you don’t feel safe being at mediation with your former partner.

Contact us to discuss your options.

If the other parent won’t come to family mediation or family dispute resolution, then your family mediator can issue a Section 60I certificate. Once this certificate is issued, then you can file this certificate with the Family Court and seek family law orders about custody, access and parenting, property settlement and spousal maintenance.
Family dispute resolution is compulsory, unless a matter is urgent or there are safety factors such as abuse, family violence or domestic violence, which mean that mediation would not be appropriate.

In Australia, family relationships centres or some community services such as Relationships Australia and Centacare provide free family mediation.
The waiting lists can be long, so often people choose to attend private mediation.
We can provide you with mediation in most cases within a week of the other party agreeing to attend mediation.
Contact us to make an inquiry to start your family mediation process.

Before your mediation, your family law mediator will speak with both parents to find out what the main custody and access issues are between you, and listen to your concerns.
You then attend a family mediation session together, but can be in separate rooms if your family mediator, after discussing with you, considers that to be the most appropriate.
Your family mediator will help you and the other parent talk about your concerns for your children, and negotiate a parenting plan. That parenting plan can be made into custody orders to be lodged in the Family Court by your family lawyers.

Mediation can bring an end to the court process if everything is agreed.

But even if not everything is agreed, some things can be agreed which narrows the  issues in dispute meaning less to argue about so a shorter hearing.

Mediation in person can be done  in separate rooms (shuttle mediation).

Online mediation using our sophisticated video technology, enables us to have a video mediation room together or break into separate ‘rooms’.

This is a great option for our rural and remote clients and avoids having to hang up a call and phone the other which can cause frustration and delay. This way we can easily go back and forth between the parties as needed.

Child focused mediation is practised by most family dispute resolution practitioners and family mediators.  Essentially, it means that the mediation is focused on the needs and best interests of your children rather than the rights and the entitlements of the parents.


Child inclusive mediation is a very different process.  In child inclusive mediation, a child consultant is engaged to meet with your children and speak to them about how your separation or divorce is impacting on them.  Children are not brought into your mediation sessions.  Rather, they meet with the child consultant independently, who speaks with them.  For appropriately aged children, the child consultant might speak to them about any views they have regarding custody or parenting moving forward.


The child consultant then provides feedback in your family mediation or family dispute resolution session with your mediator.  This is to assist you and the other parent to negotiate a parenting plan or custody orders which best meet the needs of your children moving forward.


Untying the Knot can include a child consultant in a child inclusive mediation or family dispute resolution as part of your fixed fee package.  

Learn about Child inclusive mediation with Untying the Knot

Untying the Knot

Sydney Family Law Mediation

Brisbane Family Law Mediation

Melbourne Family Law Mediation

Online and video mediation available across Australia

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