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Separation and divorce

Choosing your family mediator

Have you and your ex chosen to use family mediation to settle the various aspects of your breakup? Here are some criteria to consider when choosing a mediator that will best suit your needs.

How to find a mediator?

Ask your friends and family: Someone who has already gone through a divorce or separation may know a mediator they’d recommend.

You can also consult our geolocated Resource Directory map to find a mediator near you or your workplace.

Choose a professional who suits your needs

In Quebec, a family mediator can be a legal professional (lawyer or notary) or a psychosocial professional (social worker, psychologist, psychoeducator, guidance counsellor, or couple and family therapist). Some CIUSSS and CISSS employees can also become family mediators.

Regardless of the profession, family mediators have at least 60 hours of training on the financial, legal, fiscal, psychological, and psychosocial aspects of a breakup.

A mediator's professional experience can influence his or her mediation style and approach. We therefore recommend that you choose a mediator according to the expertise that best corresponds your needs.

Have you heard of co-mediation?

Co-mediation is a mediation session conducted by two mediators at the same time.

It allows you to benefit from the approaches and experiences of two mediators (e.g., a lawyer and a psychologist), but it can also be more expensive.

Make sure the mediator is accredited

In Quebec, family mediators must be accredited, i.e., recognized by the Ministère de la Justice.

To find out if a mediator is accredited, you can use the search engine provided by the Ministère de la Justice du Québec: Search for family mediator (Justice Québec).

In-person or remote mediation? Choose the option that suits you best

Mediators can hold their sessions in person or remotely, for example by telephone or videoconference.

If you have a preference, speak to the mediator before making an appointment.

In the case of in-person mediation, make sure that the location of the meetings is convenient for you and your ex (e.g., halfway between your respective homes or places of work).

Find a mediator who makes you feel comfortable

Your mediator will guide you through an important stage of your life. Be sure to choose someone who makes you feel comfortable.

Feel free to call several mediators to compare their approaches and make sure you have a good rapport with them.

Ask about the mediator’s fees

Ask the mediator if he or she participates in the subsidized family mediation program set up by the Ministère de la Justice du Québec.

If so, you could receive a certain number of free mediation hours. The mediator will charge you for any additional hours at the regulated hourly rate of $110, plus tax.

If the mediator doesn’t participate in the program, you’ll have to pay the fees the mediator charges you. If that’s the case, ask about the mediator’s fees, because they can vary.

Get your ex involved in choosing a mediator

The mediator you choose must also suit your ex. Neither of you can unilaterally impose your choice on the other person.

If you’re the one doing the search, you can propose a selection of mediators so that your ex can choose the one that suits him or her best.

Warning

The information presented on this page is not a legal opinion or legal advice. This page explains in a general way the law that applies in Quebec. To obtain a legal opinion or legal advice on your personal situation, consult a legal professional.