A number of significant changes for the organisation and regulation of family mediators were introduced during 2015:
- A new standards framework with a single professional designation, Family Mediation Council Accredited (FMCA) Family Mediator
- Creation of the Family Mediation Council’s independent standards and regulatory body (FMCB)
- Central register of all family mediators – regardless of membership organisation
Each of the changes above has started to have an impact on individual family mediators – including the introduction of a new registration fee… The changes are designed to give more credibility to family mediators, which is hoped in turn will give rise to the acceptance and adoption of family mediation as an option to court.
Each family mediator is assigned a Unique Registration Number (URN) by the FMC and are included in the central register. The URN indicates whether a family mediator has accredited, provisional, trained or suspended status:
- A – accredited (FMCA status)
- P – provisionally accredited (provisional FMCA status)
- T – trained (but not accredited)
- X – suspended/temporarily non-practising.
The URN provides a system for the courts to identify individual family mediators. Court forms such as the C100, FM1, Form A, A1 and B and the legal aid form CW5 currently have an area for entering information about the service name or sole trader name:
Note – Only an accredited family mediation who has received a URN including an ‘A’ or ‘P’ can sign court forms.
It is widely expected that these forms will be revised to include the mediator’s URN. In the meantime it is envisaged that the area used for Sole Trader Name should be used for the mediator URN, and some courts have started to request this information.
Progress Mediation is a case management system for family mediation, and incorporates the relevant pages of the forms as integrated templates. These have been modified to include the family mediator URN on each form, saving time when providing court or legal aid forms for clients.
Update 22nd June 2016
We’re now incorporated the mediator URN functionality into Progress Mediation 4 All for family mediation – supporting family mediation for private only case management.