Jo and Hannah came to mediation to talk about the arrangements for their two sons Liam and Riley aged 14 years and 11 years. Jo works unpredictable hours and in remote areas. He was spending time with the children every third weekend and the parents adopted a flexible mid-week arrangement when Jo’s work commitments allowed. Jo and Hannah came to mediation to put their children at the heart of their discussions and agree a clear and consistent arrangement so both parents can spend quality time with the children. Jo and Hannah had already been through the court system and came to mediation to agree a parenting plan before their next court appointment.
In the mediation meeting Jo and Hannah were able to discuss how best to manage the complex practicalities of Jo’s work commitments, whilst providing certainty and routine for the children. They discussed and agreed together how best to share information and support the children.
Over the period of the mediation meetings Jo and Hannah trialled a new arrangement and new courtesies when communicating about the children. They agreed a parenting plan and will be submitting it at their next court appointment. They agree they are now working positively together as co-parents and the children are benefiting from a consistent message from their parents and in both homes.
After the mediation the mediator prepared the parenting plan and sent it out for approval by Jo and Hannah. They were able to go to court with an agreed plan, where it was was made legally binding and a court order was made in the terms agreed in mediation; saving the clients time and distress on the day off the hearing.
Jo and Hannah were very pleased with the outcome. Jo said:
“I wish we’d done it a long time ago. This works a lot better than court. At court, you don’t feel they know much about Lewis and Riley, we are just a case number.”
“In mediation, we talk about ‘our’ children. We finally feel Lewis and Riley have been at the forefront of everything. All went well at court and we now have a court order stating that Joe has the children every other weekend and Wednesday nights, referring to the parenting plan for anything else. The court was impressed with the parenting plan. Thank you so much for your help. I just want the children to be happy and feel we have that at the minute.”