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Family -lawFamily disputes can be resolved in a number of ways. If the parties are unable to resolve matters directly then solicitors often become involved. Parties regularly negotiate their agreement through each of their solicitors. Other options for dispute resolution are as undernoted:-


This can be very useful where both parties are committed to reaching a fair agreement through mediation. The parties will attend a meeting with a trained mediator and that mediator will facilitate an open discussion and move the parties towards reaching an agreement which will be acceptable to both of them. Fiona Rasmusen is accredited by the Law Society of Scotland as a Family Mediator.

Collaborative Law:

This is a practice where each party will engage a lawyer who will be trained in collaborative law. The two parties will then meet with their lawyers present and a formal process will be followed, the result of which is intended to be a binding agreement. The ethos of this approach is that all parties present are collaborating together to reach an agreement. Fiona Rasmusen is trained in collaborative law.


This is a process whereby a mutually acceptable arbitrator will be appointed by the parties who will then present the issue or problem to the arbitrator. The arbitrator will then, having heard both sides, make a decision.


If all other methods fail or are not appropriate, then it may be necessary to raise court proceedings. There are advantages and disadvantages to this.

The advantages are that an enforceable decision is made and an end is brought to the dispute.

The disadvantages are that the parties are giving the power to make the decision to a third party (the Judge) and it is therefore taken out of their hands. Sometimes a decision is made by a Judge which is not attractive to either party.

However, once the court has made the decision, the parties have to abide by it. Also, court proceedings are expensive and take money away from the pot to be divided between the parties.


Fiona Rasmusen
Partner, Head of Family Law
Do you need help? I specialise in family law, divorce, separation, child contact and residence, prenuptial agreements and separation agreements.
Edinburgh: 0131 208 2260
Glasgow: 0141 628 0656
or Request a callback