AFMS 2019 Conference

Alberta Family Mediation - Conference 2019

Thursday, September 26 & Friday, September 27, 2019

Venue: Holiday Inn & Suites Red Deer South

*** We have rooms available for $134.99 / night. Book Online

The Schedule - Thursday


9:15AM – 12:15PM (coffee break at 10:30AM), Lonny Balbi, QC

Spousal support is both complicated and confusing. The legislation is not easy to understand; Court decisions from across the country are often conflicting; and our clients do not know what the right answer is.

The Spousal Support Advisory Guidelines were intended to simplify the understanding of spousal support and help lawyers, mediators and clients make informed choices. Although the SSAGs have helped, there is still much to be learned in this area of the law.

Lonny Balbi will try to de-mystify this area and provide you with 10 (or more) tips on understanding spousal support.

This session will concentrate on understanding basics, together with advanced ideas to practically help you and your clients. Various case scenarios will be presented and analyzed in order to show a proper implementation of spousal support. The focus will be on both beginner and advanced participants.

Annual General Meeting - All members welcome!

12:15 – 12:30pm


12:30PM - 2:00PM


12:45 – 1:15PM Lunchtime Speaker Krista Lindstrom

Learn how your clients can:

  • Access 95% of the equity inside their home instead of the traditional 80%
  • Limit the impact of Spousal support and child support when qualifying for a mortgage
  • Use equity instead of income for mortgage qualification
  • Use Spousal support, child support and child tax as income to qualify for a mortgage
  • Include joint debt, lawyer fees, and penalties inside the mortgage transaction
  • Remortgage the home in limited equity situations
  • How self-employed clients can “state” income
  • Come learn how to provide mortgage solutions for your divorcing clients


2:00 – 5:00pm, Michelle Bailey & Catherine Fitzgerald

We will cover the upcoming changes to the Divorce Act and the Matrimonial Property Act and discuss how these changes should inform your mediation practice.

The Divorce Act

Amendments to the Divorce Act have been passed by Parliament in the form of Bill C-78 and will come into force in the near future. There are significant changes to the Divorce Act as we know it including the following:

• New terminology such as “parenting” and “decision-making responsibility” instead of“custody”

• Imposition of several parental duties; and

• New guidance related to “relocation” of children.

The Family Property Act (Formerly the Matrimonial Property Act)

The long-awaited changes to the MPA will come into effect in January 2020.

The most significant change will see the provisions of the Matrimonial Property Act related to division of property extended to include unmarried parties, the individuals previously known as Adult Interdependent Partners (“AIPS”).

Property Issues for Mediators

Overview of exemptions, corporate valuations and income determination for mediators.

  • Parties who own their own business or who are self employed may present a special set of challenges for a mediator.
  • In this session we hope to highlight what questions to ask when determining the value of a company or the income of a self-employed individual.
  • We will provide you with some tips and tricks and provide some resources to turn to when you need assistance.

35th Anniversary Celebration including the John Haynes Memorial Award

5:30 - 9:00PM Speakeasy with yummy food & tasting by Troubled Monk Brewery

The Schedule - Friday

The Five Chairs Project

Friday, September 27, 2019, 9:15AM– 4:30PM, Louise Evans

TED Talk

Since childhood, Louise Evans has had a determination and an enthusiasm for life. Three things have always been dear to her heart: people, travel, and the performing arts. A large part of her happiness today comes from being able to combine all three in her work.

Born in England to Welsh parents, she left home in her early 20s to work in the South of France which marked the beginning of her passion for travel. After France, she moved to Germany. Then, in 1986, she settled in Florence, Italy which she considers her spiritual home.

Her professional journey began in educational organizations offering language and communication training to the corporate world. This suited her well. In this environment, she was able to use the skills she developed in the performing arts. Her move to Italy marked the beginning of her life as an entrepreneur and as a serious world traveler. Her passion for exploring other cultures inspired her to specialize in Cross-Cultural Diversity Management and Global Leadership, which she offers to multinational companies across the world as a facilitator, trainer, and coach. Having visited 75 countries and experienced culture shock three times, Louise enjoys bringing multiple perspectives to the present moment to help people connect across their differences.

Personal development has always been central to Louise’s life. Her desire for constant self- improvement was the driver of her own personal transformation in the presence of some extraordinary teachers, such as Thich Nhat Hahn, Eckhart Tolle of The Power of Now and, Marshall Rosenberg, the founder of Non-Violent Communication. These spiritual influencers inspired her to bring her own contribution to the world through her first book 5 Chairs, 5 Choices, a ten-year project created to help leaders, teams, and staff model behaviors for more inclusive workplaces.

Louise’s passion is to work with the human side of organizations. She believes deeply in people’s ability to grow and transform. Louise helps others find the courage to ask themselves the questions they have never asked themselves before so that they can truly excel in their lives. Since 1996, she has dedicated her professional life to developing her training and coaching project The 5 Chairs which is the core of all her professional activities.


If you can’t make the Friday presentation in Red Deer by Louise Evans then consider joining us in Calgary on Saturday, September 28 at Fort Calgary to hear her presentation. Learn more or register now.

For more complete information, see the full brochure here.

NOTE: Conference registration is now closed but please contact Sue at [email protected] or 403-233-0143 if you would like to attend