Mediation and parental cooperation

Married couples and cohabitants who have children under 16 and who move apart and parents considering legal action may be allowed up to seven hours of free mediation.

They are obliged to attend one hour of mediation. The purpose of the mediation is to help the parents to reach agreement concerning permanent residence and contact arrangements following the breakdown of their relationship.

Mediators at family counselling offices and external mediators are responsible for helping the parents to arrive at a written agreement on parental responsibility, permanent residence and contact arrangements. During the mediation, emphasis is to be placed on the best arrangement for the child.

In order to obtain more comprehensive help, the parents may make use of other facilities provided by the family counselling offices, including help in improving parental cooperation, as well as therapy and discussion groups for both parents and children. No referral is required, and the help is provided free of charge.