We believe in a holistic mediation process which involves various role players. We strive to assist our clients in finding the best way to finalise a divorce with the least amount of trauma.
KEYNOTE DISCUSSIONS AND GUIDANCE
Couples can start a process of first determining whether the marriage can be saved or not and should the possibility exist for the marriage to be saved, the clients are referred to marriage counsellors in our network for further assistance. Should it however be found that the marriage cannot be saved, the parties are referred to mediation.
- Mediation is a fair, cost effective and amicable process. The parties are in a situation where they communicate effectively and brainstorm workable solutions. In most cases this process results in parties who can continue to communicate even after divorce, which is crucial when children are involved.
- The mediator will skilfully explain the necessity to focus on the children, both parents, their future and preserving their respective estates.
- The mediator will explain the process, the parenting plan and the involvement of a professional team.
- Mediators of Family Assist work collaboratively with professionals that are pro- mediation and pro preserving the family dignity, to prevent alienation in the future and promote co -parenting skills.
- A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is agreed upon which deals with the assets and financial matters. It together with the parenting plan is signed and forwarded to an attorney of the parents’ choice or an attorney in our network who will then finalise the court process and get the divorce approved by the courts.
- The Attorneys can provide advice on your divorce but will not step into litigation.
- Our team Attorney receives the MOU and Parenting Plan from the Mediator and will draft and issue summons and all legal documents necessary to get the divorce through the court.
- Attorney will also obtain a court date.
- One of the parties will have to appear in court to get the divorce finalised.
SOCIAL WORKERS AND TRAINED PROFESSIONALS
VOICE OF THE CHILD
- For the best interest of the children the “Voice of the child” concept is advised to understand the child and his/her capacity.
- Parents meet with a Professional regarding “Voice of the Child”.
- The Professional that will speak to the children will give feedback to the parents in the mediation and together as a team they will consider the elements on the table and custom make a parenting plan.
- Protecting your children from harmful exposure to anger, confrontation and the messy details of their parents’ divorce is priceless.
- Children’s rights are often divided into prevention, protection and participation rights. The right to be heard or the right to express views are some of the manifestations of the participation rights of children.
- The right of children to participate or express their views in all matters that affect them as well as their right to be heard in official proceedings are found in various international instruments.
- The participation of a child in matters affecting them is mandatory in South Africa. The implementation of the Children’s Act, Act 38 of 2005 has changed the terminology previously used in respect of children. It has also defined the parental rights and responsibilities that parents or other parties may have, and confers equal and joint guardianship status on parents of children born from marriage
- Parenting coordinators (previously like case managers) help families resolve parenting issues and disputes related to divorce matters and or care/contact cases.
- Parenting coordinators can be selected by the parents themselves, or be court-appointed, to help parents come to an agreement regarding their responsibilities toward their children.
LIFE COACHES, COUNSELLORS, THERAPISTS
Some situations warrant further professional support, and are crucial for the continuation of a healthy life after divorce.
- Coaching deals with growth and potential, mostly within contexts requiring doing something better driven by internal or required by external factors.
- Coaches have relevant training ; either at a specific foundational level (coaching as a skill) or at least received broader behavioural science education as in the three disciplines psychology, social work, pastoral care from which to migrate legitimately to coaching as a profession.
- Counselling deals with emotional wellbeing or healing, mostly within the contexts of a personal, relational, family or community nature.
- Family councellors had relevant or enough exposure to the social scientific field and methodologies within the discipline of family therapy.
- Often also referred to as therapy, counsellors acquire their skills by having studied within one of three broad academic disciplines, namely, psychology, social work, or theology (notably pastoral theology or pastoral care and counselling).
- Therapists can refer to themselves as (in line with training they had), to mention a few, narrative therapists/practitioners, imago therapists, cognitive behavioural therapists, and sometimes differentiate themselves by topic, like marriage counsellors, trauma counsellors, child therapists, or family therapists, bereavement counsellors.
- Note that only a psychologist can formally work on a clinical-diagnostic level.
- There are also various assessments in the helping professions. Some can administer certain kinds of assessments as part of their training, like an educational psychologist.
FACILITATORS AND CONSULTANTS
- Many emotions are experienced after the actual date of divorce and due to this many parties neglect the finalisation of the Court Order. Our goal at Family Assist is to ensure that our clients do not neglect this post-divorce process and we assist among other thigs to get them in touch with attorneys who can attend to the transfer of any immovable property immediately after divorce and in some cases even at a preferential rate.
- Many parties also neglect to update their last will and testaments and their insurance policies. Our network of attorneys and financial planners can sit with the clients to determine what needs to be changed or updated in terms of their estate, which is now no longer connected to the ex-spouse.