All FMC Registered Mediators are required to follow the FMC’s Code of Practice.
The FMC operates a final stage complaints process for complaints about breaches of the Code of Practice.
Before appealing to the FMC, you must first complain to the mediator concerned. Once you have exhausted the mediator’s own complaints process (or their practice’s complaints process, if relevant) you may complain to the FMC Member Organisation to which the mediator belongs.
To find a member’s FMC Member Organisation, search for the mediator here and look to the bottom of the page. If a mediator is a member of more than one FMC Member Organisation, you will find details of which organisation to complain to in your Mediation Agreement.
If the FMC Member Organisation’s complaints process has been exhausted and you are not satisfied with the response, you can appeal to the FMC.
The Family Mediation Standards Board (FMSB) has delegated authority to hear appeals on behalf of the FMC.
Grounds and procedure for appealing to the FMSB
When can the appeal be made?
An appeal can be made once the relevant Member Organisation’s complaints process has been exhausted. An appeal must be made within eight weeks of a decision being made by the Member Organisation.
Who can appeal?
An appeal may be considered from a complainant (whether a participant in mediation or in an initial meeting, or a third party who has reported a breach of the Code of Practice) or from a mediator who is facing disciplinary action.
On what grounds can the appeal be made?
- The MO’s complaints or disciplinary procedure did not conform with the requirements set out in this document.
- The MO deviated from its own complaints or disciplinary procedure.
- The MO’s decision was contrary to the FMC Code of Practice and where relevant the FMC Professional Competence Standards.
- The MO failed to take account of all the relevant evidence that was provided.
How can the appeal be made?
An appeal can be made by writing to the FMSB at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Family Mediation Council, International Dispute Resolution Centre, 70 Fleet Street, London EC4Y 1EU.
What will happen once an appeal has been made?
The appeal will be considered in accordance with set procedures and timescales. If the appeal proceeds, it will go to a panel convened by the FMSB, which will consider it and make a recommendation to the FMSB.
As a result of the appeal, the FMSB may make recommendations to member organisations about its decisions or processes.
Where a mediator is guilty of serious or recurring misconduct, but has not had their membership revoked by his or her Member Organisation, the FMSB may also revoke a mediator’s FMCA status or remove the mediator from the FMC Register.