WHEREAS, pursuant to § 44.108, Florida Statutes, mediation should be accessible to all parties, and
WHEREAS, pursuant to Rule 12.740, Florida Family Law Rules of Procedure, mediation may be utilized in family law matters, and
WHEREAS, the use of certified mediators in family law cases has been deemed necessary by the judges of the Seventh Judicial Circuit;
NOW THEREFORE, I, WILLIAM A. PARSONS, Chief Judge of the Seventh Judicial Circuit of Florida, hereby order that certified mediators shall be utilized in family law cases in Flagler, Putnam, St. Johns and Volusia counties in accordance with the following:
- Judges may refer appropriate family law cases in which the combined incomes of the parties do not exceed $100,000 per year to the Seventh Judicial Circuit Court’s Family Mediation Program. When referring cases to the court’s program, Orders of Referral in formats substantially similar to those attached hereto as Exhibit A (PDF) (Volusia County) and Exhibit B (PDF) (Flagler, Putnam and St Johns counties) must be used. Payment of fees must be determined prior to referring a case to the mediation program. If an Order of Referral lacks requisite payment information, the mediator is directed to return the case to the referring judge for determination of the appropriate fee before proceeding.
- Parties in Family Law cases who are referred to the court’s Family Mediation Program are required to pay fees to the Clerk of Court in accordance with the following schedule:
(a) One-hundred twenty dollars ($120) per person, per scheduled family mediation session, when the parties’ combined incomes are greater than $50,000, but less than $100,000 per year;
(b) Sixty dollars ($60) per person, per scheduled family mediation session, when the parties’ combined incomes are $50,000 or less per year;
(c) No mediation fees are to be assessed against parties determined to be indigent.
- Parties in Family Law cases with combined incomes of $100,000 or more per year are not eligible for the court’s Family Mediation Program and must therefore be referred to private mediators.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Administrative Order FM-2011-027-SC is hereby rescinded.
TO BE RECORDED in Flagler, Putnam, St. Johns and Volusia counties.
DONE AND ORDERED in Daytona Beach, Volusia County, Florida this 9th day of January 2012.