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Alternative Dispute Resolution

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) has been utilized by the Florida Court System to resolve disputes for over 30 years, starting with the creation of the first citizen dispute settlement (CDS) center in Dade County in 1975. ADR processes offer litigants court-connected opportunities to resolve their disputes without judicial intervention.

News from the Field

The Supreme Court Committee on Alternative Dispute Resolution Rules and Policy (Committee) has submitted to the Florida Supreme Court an amended petition proposing amendments to Part II (Discipline) of the Rules for Qualified and Court-Appointed Parenting Coordinators. The Committee proposes amending rule 15.210 (Procedure) and adding new rules 15.220 through 15.370 to codify, in the rules, the disciplinary procedures for parenting coordinators.

The Court invites all interested persons to comment on the proposed amendments online at http://www.floridasupremecourt.org/decisions/proposed.shtml.  All comments must be filed with the Court on or before November 15, 2018, with a certificate of service verifying that a copy has been served on the Committee Chair, Honorable Michael S. Orfinger, Volusia County Courthouse Annex, 125 E. Orange Avenue, Suite 304, Daytona Beach, Florida 32114, morfinger@circuit7.org, and on support staff to the Committee, Juan R. Collins, Dispute Resolution Center, Florida Supreme Court Building, 500 South Duval Street, Tallahassee, Florida 32399, collinsj@flcourts.org, as well as a separate request for oral argument if the person filing the comment wishes to participate in oral argument, which may be scheduled in this case. The Committee Chair has until December 6, 2018, to file a response to any comments filed with the Court.


Mediator Qualifications & Discipline Review Board Vacancies

The Mediator Qualifications & Discipline Review Board (MQDRB) is the grievance body under the Florida Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators.  The MQDRB is comprised of over 60 members; up to 17 members each from the four regions of Florida.  The members include judges, county mediators, family mediators, circuit mediators, dependency mediators, appellate mediators and non-mediator attorneys who meet in complaint committees and hearing panels when grievances are filed against certified or court-appointed mediators.  Additionally, the MQDRB’s four-member Qualifications Inquiry Committee (QIC) reviews issues related to the findings of good moral character required for initial and ongoing certification.  

The MQDRB is currently accepting applications for the following member appointments:

Northern Division (1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 8th, and 14th Judicial Circuits) – 3 family mediators

Central Division (5th, 7th, 9th, 10th, 18th and 19th Judicial Circuits) – 3 family mediators

Southeast Division (11th, 15th, 16th and 17th Judicial Circuits) – 1 family mediator

Please submit a letter of interest and current résumé for the appointment you are interested in and qualified for to:

Florida Dispute Resolution Center
Supreme Court Building
500 S. Duval Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32399
Fax: (850) 922-9290
Email: DRCmail@flcourts.org

Deadline:  October 1, 2018


Background Screening Process for Mediator Certification

The Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators require mediators to have good moral character.  All applicants for mediator certification and certified mediators adding additional areas of certification are required to complete a criminal background check conducted by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.  Mediators seeking renewal are not required to complete this requirement.  The criminal background check is to be accomplished electronically at the applicant’s expense.

  • Mediators are required to go to a Livescan Service Provider to be fingerprinted.  The list of providers throughout the state is found at http://www.fdle.state.fl.us/Criminal-History-Records/Documents/ApplicantLivescanService-ProvidersVendors.aspx. Providers charge a variety of prices, applicants may want to contact more than one vendor.
     
  • The mediator should provide the Florida Dispute Resolution Center’s (DRC) Originating Agency Identification (ORI) number, FL737127Z (The last letter is Z as in zoo.), to the Livescan Service Provider so that the background screening results are sent directly from FDLE to the DRC.

Disciplinary Proceedings and Sanctions

The Dispute Resolution Center (DRC) has put a Sanctions page in place. You can access the Sanctions page from the menu on the left by selecting Rules/Discipline/Sanctions.
 

Contact the DRC

Call 850-921-2910 or send us an email at DRCMail@flcourts.org