Register of Mediators and PPCs
The FMSB maintains a Register of trained mediators, who are working towards FMCA, accredited mediators, who have obtained FMCA, and Professional Practice Consultants. The Register contains details of all mediators who hold FMCA (qualified) status, plus those who have completed approved initial training and are working towards FMCA. The Register allows members of the public to search for mediators.
The Register can be searched here.
Background to FMC Registration
During 2015 a number of changes were made to the way that family mediation is organised and regulated. These include:
i) The introduction of a new standards framework with a single professional designation, FMCA (Family Mediation Council Accredited Family Mediator).
ii) The establishment of the FMC’s independent standards and regulatory body, the Family Mediation Standards Board (FMSB).
iii) The central registration of individual family mediators.
These changes were agreed by the Family Mediation Council (FMC) and its six member organisations: ADR Group, College of Mediators, Family Mediators Association (FMA), The Law Society, National Family Mediation (NFM) and Resolution. These changes were implemented during 2015.
The Register of Family Mediators
As a core part of our drive to regulate standards, the FMC, through the FMSB, has implemented a register of family mediators. The FMC Register is available to the public and to other professionals via the FMC website. Family mediators are invited to register in order to be included on the FMC Register. This is in addition to subscribing to a membership organisation(s). Those who do not register with the FMC will not have their status as family mediator recorded on our database.
The key purpose of FMC Registration
Registration is required to demonstrate that you subscribe to the standards established by the profession for itself. This assures the public that family mediation is carried out to high standards and enables us to keep an accurate record of practising family mediators on a central database. The FMC register, in tandem with the standards framework and accreditation process, is intended to reinforce the increasingly important role family mediation now plays in the family justice system.
Who is eligible to register?
There are two categories of registration available:
- Family mediators who have achieved full accreditation (FMCA status).
- Family mediators who have completed an FMC-approved training course and are working towards FMCA (described as ‘trained’).
Registration for holders of FMCA status
Fully qualified and suitably experienced family mediators can register as accredited and use the designation ‘FMCA’. Currently this includes:
- All mediators who have gained full recognition with The Legal Aid Board, UK College of Family Mediators, Legal Services Commission, the Law Society or the Family Mediation Council (the APC scheme) provided that they are up-to-date with their member organisation’s requirements for practising family mediators.
- Mediators who either gained accreditation with Resolution or senior mediator status with the FMA before 1 January 2015 provided that they are up-to-date with their member organisation’s requirements for practising family mediators.
- Mediators with FMCA status.
Renewal and extension of FMCA status
FMCA mediators will need to reapply for accreditation every three years. For those who transferred in to FMCA (see above), the first re-accreditation deadline will be between early 2017 and the end of 2018.
All family mediators who achieved FMCA status from 1st January 2015 under the new system are able to mediate both child-related and property and finance matters, and undertake legally-aided work (provided that they are working for a service or practice that has a legal aid contract).
FMCA mediators are eligible to undertake further specialist training – for instance in child-inclusive mediation, or to become a Professional Practice Consultant (PPC). The FMC Register will include details of these and any other qualifications that are recognised by the FMC.
Registration for trained family mediators/mediators working towards accreditation
Registration is required in order to work towards FMCA status. However, until you gain accreditation, you will be subject to certain restrictions on your practice and how you can represent yourself to clients.
Registration is available following the completion of a foundation training course recognised by the FMC. Those who trained elsewhere, including outside England and Wales, can be considered on an individual basis.
Following initial training, three years (or until 31st December 2017 if you completed your training before 1st January 2015) are allowed to gain FMCA (accredited) status. Accreditation is achieved by following either:
- The FMC process, which includes observation of practice by a Professional Practice Consultant and submission of a portfolio of cases for assessment (see Achieving FMC Accreditation diagram, below), or:
- A process established by the Law Society and validated by the FMC.
If accreditation is not gained during this period, a mediator can be removed from the FMC Register and required to retrain or attend a refresher course. If there is a bona fide reason that has delayed achievement of accreditation, an extension can be granted by the FMSB.
Registration for accredited mediators returning to practice
Accredited family mediators who have not been practising and who are not registered with the FMC for the current year should contact the FMSB to confirm the further action that may be required prior to taking up practice again as a family mediator and being entered on to the register. Please read the procedure for doing this and download a questionnaire to complete.
Wider benefits of FMC Registration
Registration means being an official member of the family mediator community and part of a national network of fellow practitioners. The FMC Register provides ready access to, and clear identification of, family mediators who practise to high standards; only FMC registered family mediators will be included on the database.
Accurate, up-to-date information will provide the FMSB with an increasingly useful picture of the activities of family mediators. The FMC will build on this to increase public awareness of family mediation and promote the vital service you provide. As an example, a MOJ media awareness campaign in 2015, First Stop Family Mediation, resulted in:
- 340% increase in FMC website traffic
- 45% increase in hits on the ‘Find a Mediator’ tab on the FMC website
- 54% increase in hits to the MIAMs tab on the FMC websiteThe FMC Register will enable direct communication between the FMC/FMSB and the family mediation community – the FMC about the promotion of the profession and the FMSB about standards and accreditation. This will encourage active engagement by family mediators in these fields.