Family Mediation Council News – Only 687 Accredited Mediators (including Ian Walker)

_MG_5336The Family Mediation Council (FMC ) is now the governing body for mediation. It is made up of 6 member organizations.

I received an email news update at end of March 2017

Mediator numbers

The FMC report that there are 982 mediators registered with FMC of whom only 687 who are accredited.

Last year I reported that they estimated that this number was around 800 accredited family mediators – so this means that there has been a reduction.

This means that there are only 687 mediators who are able to sign off Family Court Application Forms after a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting.

To put that in context; Resolution has some 6000 members – some 160 odd are based in Devon, but there are many more solicitors and ,legal executives and paralegals working in the world of family law who are not resolution members.

The number of accredited mediators is small and pitifully small in comparison to the numbers of lawyers and non-lawyers who have completed mediation training courses over the last 20 years. I would estimate that 000’s have trained as mediators, but have never found enough work to gain accreditation, let alone be able to make a living.

What is the problem with mediation?

Mediation can be a good option for many separating couples, but it is not for everyone.

A successful mediation requires both of the couple to want to negotiate and to be prepared to make compromises to achieve a mutually acceptable outcome.

The mediator has skills, but the mediator does not have a magic wand. Ultimately it is down to the couple. If the process fails the costs are wasted.

This is why many are reluctant to enter into mediation. Mediation cannot guarantee a binding outcome. Yet negotiation and agreement is better than slugging things out in Court at much greater expense.

Our solution is to combine mediation with Arbitration – which does provide a legally binding outcome. This combination will be quicker and cheaper than going to Court. For more details of our scheme use the following link:

Mediation Pay Rates

The FMC correctly point out that pay rates for mediators under legal aid not been increased for over 15 years!

Mediators should count themselves lucky; solicitors who undertake legal aid work in the most complex of children cases have within this period had their rates of pay cut!

But either way its not acceptable. The Next Legal Aid contracts will be published soon – perhaps if the public purse valued mediation more, separating couples would too…

Ian Walker is an experienced mediator

I trained as a mediator in 1996 and was I believe the 13th mediator to achieve the accreditation standard with resolution(then known as the Solicitors Family Law Association – SFLA) I accredited with both FMC and the Law Society and will be one of only a handful of Mediators who is an accredited family mediator, Civil mediator (with Devon ad Somerset Law Society Civil Mediation Panel) Arbitrator and specialist family law solicitor.

I am the only family mediator based in Honiton. We have permanent consulting rooms in Taunton. My catchment area includes Taunton, Exeter, Exmouth, Sidmouth, Seaton, Axminster, Chard, Ottery St Mary, Cullompton, Tiverton and Wellington


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