Family Mediation Law

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Brookshire Law Office

Family Mediation Lawyers

in Halifax, Nova Scotia

Shawn Scott provides divorce mediation Halifax

Lawyers Halifax

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Brookshire Law Office offers a popular three-week family mediation program in Halifax that allows you to resolve some outstanding divorce and separation matters in a timely and cost effective manner. If you are accepted into the program, each spouse pays a flat fee $2,800 (+ HST) which results in the creation of a separation agreement. The mediation sessions are by video conference (Zoom) or in-person if requested. If the family mediator finds in your consultation, that there are a large number of areas where you do not agree, you may be asked to use our four or five week mediation program instead. This will allow the proper time and consideration for the number of areas of major disagreement.

How Our Three-Week Divorce Mediation Program Works

The three-week divorce mediation program, for couples with one major area of disagreement, is structured as follows:

  • 1st week: the family mediator works with each spouse separately to draft a separation agreement.
  • 2nd week: the family mediator meets together with the spouses to review the draft agreement.
  • Between 2nd and 3rd week: the spouses are encouraged to consult with a lawyer of their choosing to receive independent legal advice on the draft agreement–we can provide the spouses with a list of qualified mediation lawyers for this review.
  • 3rd week: the mediator meets together with the spouses to finalize the draft agreement.  The 3rd week typically ends with the spouses signing a separation agreement that resolves any and all outstanding family law issues. 
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The four-week mediation program is designed for medium-conflict situations. For example, the parties may disagree on multiple major issues such as: the value of the matrimonial home and who will take possession of the home. Other issues may include the date of separation, child parenting times, spousal support, and pension division. The four-week program is also used for parties who own a business. 

  • 1st week: In the first week a draft separation agreement and an equalization spreadsheet are made. To do this, the family mediator meets with each party (normally by video conference) separately for up to 2 hours.
  • 2nd week: The mediator continues to craft the separation agreement by collecting information from the parties. The mediator will meet together with the parties for up to 2 hours (normally by video conference).
  • 3rd Week: The third week is used to review the separation agreement and the equalization spreadsheet with the family mediator. The mediator will meet with both parties together for up to 2 hours to review the draft separation agreement (normally by video conference).
  • Between the 3rd and 4th week: Each party will meet with their lawyer to receive an “independent legal advice” certificate. (This will take 1-2 hours and the fee for that time is not part of the program).
  • 4th week: In this week parties will sign the separation agreement with the mediator. The mediator will first meet with the parties for 1 hour to review the recommendations made by their lawyers and to make any necessary changes to the separation agreement. The parties will then sign the agreement with the mediator.

The four-week mediation costs $3,800 (plus HST) per person, after the initial consultation.

Our Five-Session mediation program is for high-conflict situations. These are people who can no longer communicate directly with each other.

  • 1st and 2nd week: In the first two weeks the mediator meets separately with the parties for a total of up to two hours each. The mediator begins drafting the separation agreement, with the parties, as well as an equalization spreadsheet, and all the court documents needed to get a date with the binding settlement judge.
  • 3rd and 4th week: The mediator has both parties on a video conference call for up to two hours. The parties will be in breakout rooms and may or may not be together at the same time. There must be a mutual consent if they are to meet together. Both parties will review the separation agreement and the equalization spreadsheet with the mediator. For any unresolved issues, a brief memo to the judge outlining the unresolved issue(s) between the parties will be prepared by the mediator.
  • Between the 3rd and 4th week: The parties will see their independent legal advice counsel. Typically the appointment takes 1-2 hours (this fee is not part of the program).
  • 4th week: The mediator will meet for up to 2 hours to evaluate and make changes to the separation agreement and equalization spreadsheet that were suggested by the independent legal advice lawyers.
  • 5th week: If there are any unresolved issues left, the mediator will prepare on behalf of the parties, a memo to the settlement judge. Mediation sessions with a judge are at least a four-month wait in Halifax. The court package of documents includes a cover letter, and a memo/brief to the judge outlining the parties’ issue(s).

The five-week mediation costs $4,900 (plus HST and disbursements – such as court filling fees) per person, after the initial consultation.

Family Law Mediation Fees

After our mediation programs, the spouses may want to proceed with an uncontested divorce (provided they have a signed agreement). The mediator can prepare all court documents needed for their divorce. The cost for each spouse is $900 (plus HST).

Although Brookshire Law Office provides an efficient and effective mediation programs, some spouses require the assistance of a family court judge. If requested, a judge will agree to meet with the spouses for an afternoon and collaboratively work with them to secure an agreement on any remaining issues. To book a judge, certain documents must be prepared and filed with the court. The mediator will prepare and file these documents – the cost for each spouse is $1,250 (plus HST).

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