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The family mediators at CMDS attended the Kent and Sussex ADR (Alternative Resolution Dispute) Day on 13 June 2014. The day was packed with speakers and useful information regarding all the alternative forms of Dispute Resolution. That means avoiding the court process either entirely or for parts of the dispute. The information provided included the following:


Arbitration is a bit like paying for your own judge. Arbitrators tend to be experienced family law practitioners who have been trained to act like a judge and make a decision about a matter in dispute. Their decision is binding and everyone has to sign up to using the arbitrator. This is used quite a lot in many types of disputes including commercial and civil disputes. It hasn't been so popular in family cases but as people find that the family courts are incredibly slow and expensive arbitration is finding favour with those going through family disputes. For more information, please visit

Transactional Analysis and Mediation

We were given a fascinating talk about how transactional analysis can help when thinking about   the games we all play in our relationships and how this can be managed within mediation.  We looked at using boundaries to assist the mediation process. Boundaries can include matters such as no name calling and no walking out. We talked about how important it is for the mediator to keep a safe secure environment. For more information, please visit

Collaborative law

There was also a talk about the use of collaborative law. This is where the people involved and their lawyers all sign up to an agreement to work together. The aim is to resolve the dispute together in a fair way. All meetings are with both lawyers and clients altogether.  The couple cannot go to court with those lawyers if they can't resolve their dispute through the collaborative process and must use other lawyers.  For more information, visit