Frequently Asked Questions

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Do I have to attend a MIAM?

Before making an application to court the law states that you should first have a meeting with a mediator to consider if mediation is suitable for your case and circumstances.

There are circumstances when you would be exempt from attending the MIAM meeting and for some of these exemptions the court requires supporting evidence.

Below are some of the circumstances that the court consider exempt from attending a MIAM meeting :

Allegations of domestic Abuse

If you are a victim of domestic abuse, you will need to provide evidence of the relevant arrest of the other party or criminal conviction or police caution.

It is not necessarily the case that mediation would not be suitable even if there is evidence of domestic abuse. You can attend a meeting with a mediator on your own to find out if mediation would work in your case and decide once you have had your meeting if you think you want to proceed.

If there are injunctions in place you will need to discuss this with the mediator as it may be a breach of that injunction for you to meet in mediation without permission from the court for you both to attend.

If you have any safety concerns you can discuss these with the mediator and if you agree mediation could proceed we will work with you to ensure your safety. You can read more about mediation and domestic abuse here in our leaflet.

Even if mediation does not go ahead, attending the meeting with the mediator is likely to give you a better understanding of your options as you proceed through the separation process. The mediator will also provide you with information about other services you might need that include support for you and your children or guidance on how to deal with your finances now you are separated.

Child Protection

If children are known to the social services department there may be risks associated with making agreements in mediation. It is not an automatic bar to attending mediation but the mediator will have to work with the full cooperation of the parents and the local authority.


If you need to sort out your finances and need to go to court, you do not have to attend a MIAM meeting with a mediator if you or your ex-partner is affected by bankruptcy. There are other exemptions that may apply to you, see C100 or form FM1 for a full list. The court may require supporting evidence for some exemptions. If the court is not satisfied that the exemption criteria has been met your case may be adjourned for you to attend a MIAM