Barclay DeVere Family Mediation Service for Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting (MIAM)
MIAM or Form FM 1
Have you been told, that you need a MIAM?
If you have been told by your legal counsellor, that you need a Meditation Information and Assessment Meeting (MIAM) or a FM1 form before he can move ahead with your case in the court, and you are not sure about what this means, then it is perfectly understandable if you feel a little anxious or worried about the process.
Our aim here, is to help you understand the complete procedure and remove any doubts which you might have.
On 6th April 2011, the government introduced a legislation which requires anyone who wishes to take a case in the court related to certain family situations, has to attend a MIAM.
It is due to a prevailing viewpoint that family matters are best resolved in meditation and by counselling than in court rooms.
That is why the government wants to make sure that the families at least try this method once. You’re not expected to commit to meditation for resolving the case, but you just need to show that you have considered it.
However, if you find that meditation is the best way to move forward after attending a MIAM, then it can be arranged during the meeting.
You can attend a MIAM meeting alone or with your ex-partner. It is better to attend the meeting together, although it is not necessary.
If you aren’t comfortable in asking your former partner yourself, a mediator can establish contact with him/her and explain the purpose of the meeting to them. At the meeting, the mediator can explain about the procedure of meditation and how it will be beneficial in resolving your case.
He will also assess you during the procedure and determine whether meditation is a viable solution or not for your case.
After the meeting, both parties will have the opportunity of considering meditation as an option for resolving the issue.
If you feel meditation is the best way to move forward, then a number of meetings will be set up and has to be attended by both the parties until the mediator is able to draw an agreement which both parties can sign.
However, if one or both the parties discard meditation as an option for resolving the issue, then the mediator will issue form FM1. This form is a proof that you’ve attended a MIAM and considered meditation as an option. The form needs to be produced in court in order to move ahead with the proceedings, required to resolve the conflict.
You should also note that although it is not necessary to attend the meeting together with your partner, but it is still necessary for both the parties to attend the meeting, even if they do so at different times. The mediator can also issue form FM1 if he feels that the parties won’t be able to come to an agreement by this method.