Mediator helps divorce be civil

Edit Farun helps couples avoid the costly court system

First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes… divorce.

Edit Farun helps couples who have decided to put an end to their matrimonial woes.

“I’ve seen a lot of families go through a very contentious divorce where the children and families are suffering,” she says. “There are a lot of issues that need to be put on the table and typically what ends up happening is it’s so overwhelming that people get lost in the process.

“It takes so long and it’s such an emotional and psychological toll and it can be very traumatic so I decided to come into this field to make a difference for families.”

Through Collaborative Mediation, her new business on Merton Street between Yonge Street and Mt. Pleasant Road, she says couples are able to reach their own separation agreement on issues like custody, child or spousal support and property division.

“This process is unique because it gives couples a different way of separating,” she says. “It gives them the autonomy to create their own agreement without activating the courts.”

Farun says she acts as an impartial third party to facilitate the negotiations and always starts off with a free consultation to make sure both parties are on board.

Even though word of mouth has played a big role in getting new clients, she says she also offers workshops at agencies and companies around the city to spread the word about mediation.

“The statistics in Ontario are staggering with the divorce rate being over 40 percent so it seems to me that a lot of people would probably benefit from having an alternative route to go through in terms of creating something that they want,” she says.

Although most of her clients have typically been married for 8–12 years with one to two kids when they start using her services, she says one of her personal career highlights was helping a couple work through an agreement while the woman was still pregnant.

“We needed to negotiate what that was going to look like because the relationship had dissolved and the baby had not been born yet,” she says, adding she always focuses on the best interest for the children involved.

“The mom wanted to have a peaceful pregnancy and they also wanted to be on good terms once the baby was born so that was actually a beautiful mediation that I feel personally proud of.”

Farun believes mediation and creating a mutual agreement called a memorandum of understanding is not only quicker, healthier and cheaper than litigation, she says it also improves communication between the separating couple, reduces tension and enhances cooperation.

“I want them to feel that they had direct input in their process,” she says. “I want them to take away feeling comfortable and healthy with the fact that they have come up with the best agreement possible with their ex-spouse.”

About this article:

By: Ann Ruppenstein
Posted: Mar 7 2012 4:44 pm
Filed in: Business
Edition: Toronto