Family Arbitration: The Middle Way?

November 11, 2019  |   Posted by :   |   Blog

Family arbitration is something of a mid-point between other alternative methods of dispute resolution and the court process though it is unfortunately often overlooked or simply not made available to separating couples.

Family arbitration is suitable for couples who are unable to reach an agreement between themselves or with the support of a mediator and would prefer not to go to court but still need someone else to help make the decisions. The process involves appointing a joint family arbitrator to act as an objective decision-maker, in much the same a judge would do in the family courts. However, every aspect of the arbitration process remains private, and within a schedule agreed by both parties, making it far more flexible than attending a court appointment.

Family arbitration bridges the gap between non-court-based methods of dispute resolution and all-out court divorce, while offering a speedy process for couples who are unable to come to an agreement on their own. Unfortunately, arbitration remains a much-underused method of resolution mostly due to a lack of awareness that it can be used for family law cases. However, arbitration really is an effective ‘middle way’, and could help couples to keep their affairs out of court, while also reducing the impact and expense of divorce.

Frances Lindsay is one of the few qualified family law arbitrators in the Thames Valley, and also offers a wealth of experience as a family law solicitor and mediator. To find out more about the options for out-of-court divorce, mediation, collaborative family law, and family arbitration, get in touch at or book a free 45-minute family law appointment at our offices in Maidenhead. We cover the whole of Buckinghamshire, Berkshire and the Thames Valley, including Beaconsfield, Burnham, Cookham, Farnham Common, Marlow, and Windsor.

For more information on family arbitration, check out some of our previous blog posts on the subject:

What is Family Arbitration?

The Benefits of Arbitration

Can Arbitration be Used by Separating Couples?

10 Reasons to Use Arbitration to Deal with Finances During Divorce

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