What is family arbitration?

Family arbitration is a flexible and confidential way of resolving disputes arising from your family relationship.

You and your partner agree to appoint a fair and impartial arbitrator to determine the issues in dispute, perhaps rather than making an application to court.

Although arbitration is a voluntary process, once entered into you are guaranteed a binding decision at the conclusion of the arbitration.

Arbitration can be determined following a hearing before the arbitrator, or if the issues are suitable, on the papers alone. You can be represented throughout the arbitration process by a solicitor or barrister, although this is not a necessity.

What are the benefits?

Family arbitration is a highly flexible and effective method of dealing with family disputes, whether this is for the whole case or just one part of it. It is entirely confidential, saves time (there is no need to wait for a court date) and is tailor made to suit the needs of you and your partner.

Is arbitration right for me?

Arbitration can be quicker, cheaper and less formal than court proceedings. It can be used at any point in family litigation, whether that is before proceedings have begun or afterwards. It is a very effective way to resolve negotiations if they have stalled or if you want a more bespoke process then the court can offer.

How can we help?

Our arbitrator, Fiona Read is able to arbitrate in the following types of cases:

If you would like to speak with a member of the team you can contact our family law solicitors; Holborn office 020 3826 7526; Kingston office 020 3826 7527 or Putney office 020 3826 7520 or complete our enquiry form.

Fees for family arbitration are usually charged on a fixed fee basis, with a fee for preparation for the arbitration hearing and then a fixed fee per day that the arbitration hearing continues. Rooms in which to hold arbitration hearings are available at both our Putney and Bedford Row offices.

Alternatively fees can be charged on an hourly basis depending on the case, which is likely to be more suitable for paper applications and discrete issues.


Resolution (formerly known as the Solicitors Family Law Association) is an association of family solicitors committed to promoting a non-confrontational approach to conflict resolution.


Family Arbitrator

FamilyArbitrator aims to promote informed understanding of family arbitration principles and to encourage the spread of arbitration as a form of private dispute resolution in financial and child related family cases.