How much does family mediation cost?
This is a common and very understandable question when people are considering the process of family mediation.
I tell people right up front that my standard fixed fee is $2,250 (plus GST) – which can be divided between the parties however they wish. So the cost for each party is around $1,125.
It is important to know that the costs of arriving at an agreement through family mediation are a tiny fraction of the legal expenses that are likely in pursuing litigation through the Family Court. Apart from being mandatory where children involved, family mediation is also a far quicker and less stressful way of divorcing in Australia.
The average cost of a matter that goes through Family Court in Australia is way north of $50,000 – $75,000 per party. By engaging in a successful family mediation, the vast majority of that could have been available for distribution between the parties rather than wasted ion legal fees.
How is the fee structure for family mediation set?
Each mediator has their own pricing structure. At Move On Mediation, there is a one-off fee which is payable upfront, so each party knows exactly what the cost will be from the very start. No hidden fees or extra charges.
Unlike family lawyers, who push your case and charge for the time spent on your matters, I focus only on achieving a fair and reasonable result for all parties. The set fee is final and will not be increased, unless you want to change the agreement after it has been reached.
What do family mediation fees include?
Family mediation fees include the following services:
- Discussing the process and arrangements for the mediation
- Providing the venue and setting the date for the mediation
- Holding pre-mediation intake meetings with each party to discuss issues and possible solutions
- Preparing asset and liabilities schedules for both parties
- Conducting the mediation sessions between the two parties
- Drafting agreements to allow parties to submit to the Family Court, or to seek further independent legal advice
- Provide detailed guidance regarding Family Court compliance for Consent Orders
- Introduce you to fixed-fee lawyers solely for the purpose of finalising and filing the Consent Orders to the Family Court
Our Fee Structure
Here at Move On, our family mediation fees are as follows:
- $2,250 for children’s/parenting matters or financial settlement
- $2,500 for children’s/parenting and financial settlement
If your lawyer attends the mediation session, the mediation sessions will naturally take longer, resulting in higher costs, and the fixed fees are:
- $2,750 for children’s/parenting matters or financial settlement
- $2,950 for children’s/parenting matters and financial settlement
A once-off Commitment Fee of $125, is payable if you want us to arrange a mediation with another party. If the mediation goes ahead, this amount will be deducted from your share of the overall mediation fee.
The fees above exclude GST.
Possible Additional Family Mediation Fees
If a party refuses to attend family mediation, you will probably be entitled to receive a Section 60I Certificate, enabling you to take your matter to the Family Court. The cost of the certificate is $250, less the Commitment Fee if it was paid.
If both parties wish to make substantive changes to an agreement already reached at mediation, an additional fee of $350 for each hour the mediator spends on making those changes, will apply.
If both parties wish to renegotiate a new modified agreement, a 3 – 4-hour follow-up session may be arranged at a cost of $950.
Who is responsible for the payment?
Normally the costs are split between the two parties, but you can decide who pays what between you and your ex-partner.
When do the fees need to be paid?
Fees must be paid prior to the mediation to confirm the booking and allow the intake sessions to proceed.
Do I get a refund if mediation is cancelled?
A refund based on a sliding scale will apply for any cancellations. The refund will range from 75% of the total fee, if the cancellation is made 7 weekdays prior to the mediation, to 5% of the total fee, if the cancellation is made only one weekday prior to the cancellation.