Family business disputes

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to see how we can best help you.

Family business disputes

Family businesses are the most common form of business in the UK.

Conflict is normal in business and in families. But for family businesses, the consequences of disputes occurring can be long-term and disastrous.

Typical issues that can lead to a falling out amongst family members include: dealing with family tensions over strategy; the role of extended family members in the business; the failure of family members working in the business to consult the wider family.

Communication can suffer and in some extreme cases decision-making can become paralysed.

So, if you are quarrelling over the future direction of the business, or if you cannot agree what role relatives should play in the business, then try mediation.

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Contact us on 020 8315 7460 for a confidential discussion to see how we can best help you.

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Mediation FAQ's


Answer

If everyone agrees to try mediation then an appointment is made for your first mediation session.

If you decide not to continue into mediation or it’s not suitable in your circumstances then the mediator will have to sign the relevant court form to show you have considered mediation. This means you can take your case to court, if that’s what you decide to do next.

Answer

Contact a mediator as soon as you need help sorting things out. Even if you’ve been separated for a while, or if your case has already gone to court, mediation can still help to resolve things.

You can’t usually take your case to court until you find out if mediation can help you first. If you can’t show that you’ve considered it, the judge may stop or delay proceedings until you have.

Once you’ve found a mediator, the next step is to attend a first meeting with them to find out if it’s right for you. Sometimes this is called a Mediation Information & Assessment Meeting (MIAM).

If you think you need legal advice to help you during mediation, this can be arranged at any time during the process. You might be able to get legal aid to pay for this.

If your case is not suitable for mediation you will still need to show the judge you’ve considered it by filling in the relevant court form.

Answer

Mediators are trained to:

  • Listen and help you both to work out what has to be dealt with.
  • Discuss what your options might be and what might work best for the future.
  • Make sure you both have chance to speak and be heard.
  • Provide any legal information needed to help your discussions or confirm when you need to consult a family lawyer.
  • Tell you when you might need further independent advice on matters such as pensions.
  • Ensure decisions are made jointly, are fair for both of you, for any children involved, and for your family circumstances.

 

When you reach agreement, the mediator will put it in writing and make sure you’re all clear about what it means.


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