Family Law Solicitors

Mediation Solicitors

When a marriage breaks down, couples will often need to resolve various legal matters, but do not necessarily want to attend Court to do so. At Laker Legal, our mediation solicitors can provide an expert family mediation service, supporting couples to resolve finances and child arrangements when getting divorced.

When a relationship breaks down, it is important to make decisions about the future, meeting the needs of both parties and any children. A Court contest does not always achieve this important goal because there is a perceived “winner” and a perceived “loser”. As a result, the needs of the children can sometimes be overlooked in the heat of a “contest”.

Mediation can be a far more suitable option for divorcing parties, allowing for positive outcomes and less stress. Our expert family mediation lawyers can support individuals with many different types of family mediation, including:

  • Mediation for children’s issues
  • Mediation for property and finance issues
  • Mediation to resolve both children and finance issues

Contact our mediation solicitors

If you’re looking for family mediation services, contact our family mediation solicitors today.  Our head office is located in Lancaster, but we also have offices in Bath, Kings Hill, Maidstone York and Preston for your convenience. You can call your local office directly, or fill in our enquiry form to request a call back.

How our mediation solicitors can help

Children issues mediation

Mediation to work out arrangements for children will usually involve discussing issues such as who the children live with and what access/visiting arrangements you would prefer. These sessions can also be used to discuss any issues about religion, schooling, and any specific issues that affect your child’s life. Some couples can resolve their children’s issues in one mediation session. For others it may take up to three sessions.

Property and finances mediation

Mediation to work out arrangements for property and financial matters will usually involve working out arrangements for the division of assets. This will usually include pensions, responsibility for liabilities, and any issues in relation to income/maintenance. Some couples can resolve their property and financial issues in two sessions for others it may take up to five sessions.

Mediation for all issues

Our mediation service can support couples who would like to resolve both child arrangements and finances in the same family mediation sessions. Some couples can resolve all these issues in three sessions, while for others it may take up to six sessions.

Why work with our mediation lawyers?

At Laker Legal we have much experience supporting couples with our expert family mediation services. Our family law solicitors take a sensitive and practical approach, consistently recognising the uniqueness of every case.

Richard Hirst is a very experienced Solicitor/Mediator. For very many years he has successfully helped many separating and divorcing couples to work out acceptable arrangements for their finances and for their children.

He is a specialist practitioner member of the Law Society’s Accredited Family Mediation Panel and an approved Legal Services Commission Family Mediator.

If you wish to arrange your Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting or a mediation appointment, get in touch with our family mediation solicitors today. You can telephone (01524) 753040 or e-mail

Our family team includes members of the Family Mediation Accreditation scheme and Resolution with all team members undertaking robust professional development on a continuing basis.

Frequently asked questions about family mediation

What is family mediation?

Family mediation refers to a process used to support families to settle legal issues and disputes. For instance, where a couple is getting divorced and needs support to arrange their finances, or child residency matters.

Sessions are facilitated with the support of a trained mediator, leading the involved parties to negotiate the issues at hand. The method is used to support families to arrange family matters without needing to attend Court.

How does family mediation work?

Family mediation works by giving both parties the opportunity to amicably discuss property, finance or child arrangements. Sessions are facilitated with the guidance of a qualified mediator. The mediator remains neutral and supports the couple to resolve family law issues.

Before beginning mediation sessions, involved parties are required to attend a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting. This meeting is to ensure that their particular case is appropriate for Mediation. Not all cases are suitable, for example, where any kind of abuse has occurred within the relationship.

How much does family mediation cost?

How much family mediation costs depends on how many sessions it takes to resolve the matters at hand. In less complex cases, it may take just one mediation session and therefore be less expensive. Other cases may require several mediation sessions, and incur a higher fee.

At Laker Legal we appreciate that divorcing parties need a transparent estimation of costs at the beginning. We will always ensure that you are kept up to date with regard to pricing, and receive an accurate quote at the earliest opportunity.

How long does family mediation take?

Family mediation sessions take approximately one or two hours. Some divorcing couples may need just one session, while others may require several to resolve matters. Due to this, family mediation may take anywhere between 3 and 8 weeks, sometimes longer if the situation is more complex.

How do you start family mediation?

To start family mediation, first you’ll need to attend a Mediation Information Assessment Meeting. This is to ensure that your case is suitable for mediation.

You’ll need to contact a mediation solicitor who can offer a family mediation service. Where your case is not suitable for mediation, your solicitor will have other options available for you.

What are the benefits of mediation?

Mediation gives parties the chance to resolve family legal issues without the expense and stress of Court processes.

Most people welcome being able to take control of the costs and the process. Many individuals are reluctant to hand over hugely important family decisions to lawyers and judges.

In summary, the process is helpful to keep legal costs down, while maintaining control and avoiding Court procedures.

Contact our mediation solicitors

If you’re looking for family mediation services, contact our family mediation solicitors today.  Our head office is located in Lancaster, but we also have offices in Bath, Kings Hill, Maidstone Preston and York for your convenience. You can call your local office directly, or fill in our enquiry form to request a call back.


What our clients say...

Thank you so much Richard, you have been so kind and patient with me when I have been at about the lowest point of my life after losing my wife, I can never thank you enough. I will also let my family know my wishes that Laker Legal Solicitors deal with my estate when that time comes.

Mr Y, Addington, Kent.

Jessica Blacow from Laker Legal Solicitors Lancaster pulled out every stop truly amazing lady / firm nothing was to much trouble I honestly felt like they was my friends not just a firm that wanted your money but a solicitor firm that cared with compassion I will use Laker Legal Solicitors Lancaster for all my needs in the future.

Mr T, Lancaster

Best conveyancing experience ever. After two supposedly good law firms failed to even do the basics post instruction, for nearly 8 weeks, Jess at Laker Legal took on the difficult challenge of overseeing my purchase and completion in record time. Always proactive, very knowledgeable of her subject and extremely good communicator. I never had to chase the firm for anything. They always answered my calls efficiently. I can't praise them enough. What a wonderful experience.

I recommend Jess and would be very happy to use her again in the future.

Mrs A, Lancaster.

I can highly recommend John Hirst at Laker Legal solicitors in Lancaster. He was superb from start to finish dealing with a very complex child arrangements case for me. A really decent guy and an excellent family law solicitor who genuinely cares about his clients. John was fully up to speed with my case at all times and we got the outcome we wanted.

Mr B, Kendal

I am very pleased with Laker Legal firm, my Solicitor John Hirst, was extremely helpful throughout the drawing of my prenuptial agreement. A very professional and knowledgeable approach yet warm,and friendly enough to feel comfortable with in a situation that can be quite uncanny to discuss or uneasy as per say. Thankyou again!

Mrs V – London

I used the services of Jess and the team at Laker Legal as a first time buyer looking for properties to buy, near and around Bath.

Jess was fantastic, in her communication during the process as well as her knowledge and ability during the conveyancing process. She helped me make informed decisions and ultimately find and purchase a wonderful home near Bath. Jess is adept at spotting potential issues during a purchase that I believe others may not.

She clearly excels at her craft and you will be in safe hands should you use her services too.


Thank you for all your help and support over the last 12 months. You and the team at Laker Legal have been fantastic.
Sarah was lovely and really supportive yesterday.

Ms. W of Leyland

A devastating event brought us to call on Laker Legal. We were put in touch with Mr John Hirst, and from the first moment we spoke to him we knew everything was going to be ok. Mr John Hirst, was always on the end of the Phone or Email, Kept in touch with us 100% of the time, and the support we received took so much pain off our family. All i can say is Thank you so much for everything you did for us.

Ms P - Maidstone

A big ‘thank you’ Richard from Steve and myself. Your time and attention you gave to both of us was remarkable. I’ve had dealings with many solicitors over the years, but have never received this level of service as you gave.

Mrs R – West Malling, Kent

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