Article by our listed attorney Fawzia Khan
“The best time to mediate is before the litigation begins. It is not a
sign of weakness to suggest it. It is the hallmark of commonsense.
Mediation is a perfectly proper adjunct to litigation. The skills are
now well developed. The results are astonishingly good. Try it more
Believe it or not these words are not part of any marketing drive for
mediation, but were uttered by a Judge in the landmark case of MB v NB
2010(“the Brownlee case’).
This case has sent shockwaves within the legal fraternity, as it penalised the
attorneys, by limiting the fees they could recover from their client, because
the attorneys failed to send that divorce matter to mediation at an early
Brassey AJ was highly critical of those attorneys who approach each divorce
as a war who used their “legal” weapons in a fight to destroy the opposition.
“As happens in most wars of attrition, by the time the war has come to an
end both sides have lost. There is now permanent hatred between the parties
and their joint assets have been consumed to pay legal fees,” he said.
He referred to the cost savings by the litigants and said the legal costs often
come out of the “common pot” and this now often depleted the assets that
can be used towards the children.
The Supreme Court of Appeal endorsed the judgement in the
Brownlee case, which related to benefits of mediation in family law.
Mediation is now part of the divorce law landscape. Any person who fails to
use the process, where appropriate, does so to his or her own detriment.
As an independent expert and trained mediator I help the parties through
mediation, to conclude a Memorandum of Understanding, which could be
presented to their attorneys to be incorporated into a Settlement Agreement.