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Civil news: delivery of family mediation work from 2018

Headline intentions document covering mediation work from 2018 published on 7 February 2017.

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Our approach to family mediation work from 1 April 2018 is set out in a headline intentions document which is now available – see link below.

The previously published headline intentions document for all other areas of civil legal aid work confirmed that existing family mediation contracts will end on 31 March 2018. This was made available on 20 January 2017 – see link below.

We also explained on 20 January that we would separately publish information giving further details about the way ahead for family mediation work.

The intention is for the delivery of family mediation services to operate under the new 2018 Standard Civil Contract from 1 April 2018.

When will the tender open?

A tender process for these contracts will open in April 2017. All organisations must successfully tender for a contract if they wish to deliver legally aided mediation services from 1 April 2018.

Service delivery remains similar

The government remains committed to family mediation as a key route to helping family disputes avoid court proceedings. So, we will not be making significant changes to the delivery of family mediation services when compared with current contracts.

Quality assurance

We will maintain the quality of mediation services under current contracts but will no longer require family mediation providers to hold the Mediation Quality Mark (MQM).

Instead, the contract will include the key quality standards set out in MQM and will require that mediators and mediation organisations meet the standards set out by the:

  • Family Mediation Council
  • Family Mediation Standards Board

Further details are provided in the mediation headline intentions document.

Further information

Civil 2018 contracts tender – to download mediation-specific headline intentions document and headline intentions document for all other areas of civil work

Published 7 February 2017