CALM Scotland, the organisation for family lawyer-mediators, has launched a website to enable people facing family breakup to consider mediation to help them with any issues that arise.
The aim of the site is to improve knowledge in Scotland about mediation as a means of resolving family disputes, and to make it easier for separating parties and their solicitors to make a referral to CALM members.
Scott Docherty of Dumbarton solicitors McArthur Stanton, who designed and implemented the site in conjunction with Moore Legal Technology, said CALM had found that despite mediation having been in existence in Scotland for many years, there was still a lack of information about it and how the process worked.
"We are attempting to address this in a number of ways including with the new site", he commented. "For separating parties, the site is targeted for them and provides information on how mediation can help resolve their separation issues; it provides a number of resources, explanations on how the mediation process can be started and progressed, and materials on and offline that can be accessed with a view to encouraging parties to appreciate the benefits of not rushing to court or advancing conflict after separation.
"For family solicitors, again the site provides more information on the process, and makes it easier for them to locate an appropriate CALM Scotland lawyer-mediator with a view to a referral. It is also a resource to which solicitors may point matrimonial clients, to whom of course we have a duty to explore all options available in resolving the matter to hand."
Mr Docherty added that having witnessed the movements south of the border in family mediation in the recent past, CALM considered that there might be more scope in the coming years to develop the use of mediation in Scotland.
The site is at www.calmscotland.co.uk/