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Separation and Divorce Specialty

Requirements for Registered Family Mediator Status Specializing in Separation and Divorce Mediation

Common issues that a Separation and Divorce specialist would mediate include:

  • The division of property, assets, and debts
  • The creation of parenting plans
  • The calculation of child support
  • The determination of spousal support

In order to meet the qualifications to be a Registered Family Mediator, with a specialization Separation and Divorce, a mediator must fulfill all of the following requirements (A – F).

A. Education and Experience

ll RFMs must meet one of the following four education and experience descriptions:

  • A Law degree or a Master-level degree in one of the following: Psychology, Social Work, Education, Mediation, Conflict Resolution or other related field
    plus
    25 hours of mediation experience
  • Bachelor-level degree, plus minimum 200-hour Conflict Resolution Training (including successful assessment)
    plus
    25 hours of mediation experience
  • Minimum 200-hour Conflict Resolution Training (including successful assessment)
    plus
    75 hours of mediation experience
  • Bachelor-level degree (in above related fields)
    plus
    75 hours of mediation experience.

Mediators who also practise collaborative law may use their collaborative-law experience to maintain their RFM status, but must initially qualify for this designation by undertaking mediation cases.

B. Basic Mediation Training

In addition to, or as part of, the above qualifications, all Registered Family Mediators must have completed generic conflict resolutions courses, totalling a minimum of 35 hours, which have covered all of the following areas:

  • Conflict Resolution
  • Negotiation
  • Communication
  • Interest-based Mediation
  • Mediation Skills

C. Specialized Mediation Training

All RFMs applying for a specialty in Separation and Divorce must complete an additional 40 hours of specialized training covering all of the following subject areas:

  • Definition of Mediation and Introduction to Mediation Process
  • Role of Mediator
  • Mediator Techniques *must include a practical component, i.e., role plays
  • Intake Session - a discussion of: Pre-Mediation Sessions vs. No Pre-Mediation Sessions *must include a practical component
  • Child Development as related to separation and divorce
  • Research outlining the effects of divorce on children
  • Parenting Plans - including contact plans between parents and children, special holidays / events, custody (decision making authority), dispute resolution, basic principles concerning children
  • Child Support Guideline Training
  • Property, Pension and Tax Law
  • Interest based Negotiation *must include a practical component
  • Spousal Support
  • Domestic Violence *must include a practical component i.e., practice with screening protocols
  • High conflict divorce
  • Attend Parenting After Separation Course and/ or review course materials
  • Ethics / liabilities and standards of practice in Mediation
  • Review of Code of Professional Conduct
  • Current trends in Case Law as it applies to Mediation
  • Approaches to conflict resolution including current research
  • Communication process *must include a practical component
  • Collaborative divorce mediation (using the assistance of other professionals)
  • Drafting Mediation Reports *must include a practical component i.e., draft a final report

D. Documentation

RFM candidates must submit copies of three (3) real mediation reports (with identifying details omitted) demonstrating the results of Separation and Divorce mediations. These reports should, between them, demonstrate a knowledge and competency in dealing with all of the common issues arising in divorce and separation, namely:

  • The division of property, assets, and debts
  • The creation of parenting plans
  • The calculation of child support
  • The determination of spousal support

It is AFMS policy that our mediators do not prepare agreements for client signature. The reports should have a clear indication that the provisional agreements reached by the clients are subject to their obtaining independent legal advice and will be non-binding until incorporated into a formal signed agreement. Reports should be signed by the mediator.

Please note that the results of Collaborative Law files do not qualify as Mediation Reports.

E. Malpractice Liability Insurance

All RFMs must submit evidence of applicable malpractice insurance coverage

F. Ongoing Activity and Education

All RFMs specializing in the area of Separation and Divorce must complete a minimum of 50 hours of mediation per year in this area. (Please note that Collaborative Law files qualify for the activity requirement.)

In addition, RFMs must complete a minimum of 20 hours of continuing education in this specialty area every two years.

 

Alternative Qualifications

All RFMs specializing in the area of Separation and Divorce must complete a minimum of 50 hours of mediation per year in this area. (Please note that Collaborative Law files qualify for the activity requirement.) 

In addition, RFMs must complete a minimum of 20 hours of continuing education in this specialty area every two years.

Application Forms

To apply for Registered Family Mediator status, print and complete the Application Forms and return them to our offices along with the required fees.

Application Forms for Registered Family Mediator Status