“Mediation is in the best interest of the children; as well as your financial and emotional well being.” - Meagan Bensadoun Principal Mediator and Arbitrator

FAQ/Why Mediation?

Why choose family mediation?
Privacy! Mediation keeps you and your family out of the public court process
Control! It allows parties to make decisions that are mutually acceptable and in the best interests of the child(ren)
Affordability! Mediation is a financial and emotional cost efficient alternative to lawyers.
It’s quick. Mediation can be done as fast as you need it to be done. Given both parties provide full financial disclosure, a mediation can start within two weeks of signing the mediation agreement.
It works! Statistics prove that parties who are in control of their outcome, are much more likely to stick to the decisions made.
What is family mediation?

Family mediation is a voluntary Alternative Dispute Resolution designed for separating parties who want to resolve their outstanding family disputes outside of the public court process.

At eye to eye mediation, we practise closed mediation, which means everything discussed in mediation cannot and will not be used against either party, should it ever proceed to court.

Family mediation offers a creative, amicable, alternative to battling in court.

The power is in your hands

Our trained family mediators are here to facilitate you through the process. We do not make any final binding decisions for you and we do not represent either side. Our mediators are neutral third parties who help you reach resolution on any outstanding family issues in dispute.

What can be mediated?

Anything that is relevant to your individual case.

Most common issues in dispute, resolved in mediation, include, but are not limited too,

  • 1) Custody
  • 2) Access
  • 3) Parenting Plans
  • 4) Child Support
  • 5) Spousal Support
  • 6) Matrimonial home
  • 7) Division of Assets
  • 8) Equalization
  • 9) Pensions
Who should mediate?
Mediation is appropriate for the vast majority. Even when domestic violence is present, mediation processes can still be appropriate. During our intensive screening process, we will determine whether family mediation is the right option for you.

Mediation FAQ

At what stage of separation is mediation appropriate?
The mediation process can start at any stage of separation. Whether you have just decided to separate, or have already begun a court process, mediation can work for you.
We have already filed in court, but want to start mediation.
At eye to eye mediation, if a court process has already commenced, we request that any scheduled hearing be placed on hold in order to give mediation a fair try.
How many sessions does it usually take to come to a resolution?
This is up to the parties involved. On average, for a full spectrum mediation, actual hours in mediation is anywhere from 4-6 hours. Parties who agree on the majority of issues, and who are willing to be open minded, could be less. Parties who are very entrenched in their positions and do not want to compromise to reach resolution, will be more.
What if my partner is not open to mediation? Can it be mandated?
No. Mediation is a voluntary process. If you are in the court process, a judge will likely suggest you try mediation before continuing in court, but it is not mandatory.
Can mediation apply to common law partners?
Yes. In terms of legality, common law partners are not always entitled to the same regulations as couples who are married. However, issues in dispute are usually very similar and will be mediated in the same manner.
Does mediation work?
YES! When both parties are motivated to come to a resolution, it will work. Statistics show that couples who are in control of their own outcome, are much less likely to deviate from what they have agreed upon.
Does mediation work for same sex couples?
Same sex couples are treated exactly the same and are entitled to the same legislation in Ontario.
What is a Memorandum of Understanding?
A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is a detailed document outlining everything that was agreed upon in mediation, as well as what, and when the terms will be reviewed. It is not a legally binding document. To translate it into a legally binding document, parties can have a lawyer change it into a separation agreement, or submit it into court for a judge to review and have it court ordered.
Do I need a lawyer to participate in mediation?
No. However, it is strongly recommended to receive independent legal advice prior to entering a mediation .
What happens if my ex does not honour our mediated agreement?
If one party does not honour your mediated agreement, the first thing to do would be to figure out why? If it is a matter of adjusting certain aspects of the agreement, it would be advised to return to mediation to revise the parts of the agreement that are not working. Should this no longer be an option the parties wish to explore, it would be recommended to seek the advice of a family law lawyer. Keep in mind, an agreement that isn’t translated into a legally binding document cannot be enforced.

ARBITRATION FAQ

REASONS TO ARBITRATE
Privacy!Arbitration is outside of the public court system.Your arbitration award can only become open in a few situations, such as one party wanting to appeal the award. In this case, a court file would be opened, becoming public information.
Control! You chose the arbitrator, aside from certain documents which will be mandatory, such as full financial disclosure, you decide what evidence will be presented and which witnesses you will bring, if any.
Faster! Arbitration has a few different steps. Provided all parties comply with the process, provide the necessary documents, and are flexible with their schedules, an arbitration from start to finish can usually happen in 4-6 months.Privacy! Arbitration is outside of the public court system. Your arbitration award can only become open in a few situations, such as one party wanting to appeal the award. In this case, a court file would be opened, becoming public information. Control! You chose the arbitrator, aside from certain documents which will be mandatory, such as full financial disclosure, you decide what evidence will be presented and which witnesses you will bring, if any. Faster! Arbitration has a few different steps. Provided all parties comply with the process, provide the necessary documents, and are flexible with their schedules, an arbitration from start to finish can usually happen in 4-6 months.
What is family arbitration?
Family arbitration is a voluntary alternative dispute resolution process where both parties meet with a mutually chosen arbitrator to resolve their legal issues, without having to go to court. When you and the other party cannot agree, each party tells his or her side of the dispute to the arbitrator and asks for a specific decision. Their decision is called an arbitration award and the award is enforceable. This means that the court can make a court order based on the family arbitration award, and therefore both parties must follow the order. The process is confidential, as well as time and cost efficient. Arbitration is regulated by the following acts:
Can an arbitrator grant a divorce after an award has been made?
No. An arbitrator cannot change official family status. He or she cannot grant a divorce or annul a marriage. Only a court can make that type of order.
Do you need a lawyer to participate in arbitration?
No. You are, however, required to obtain independent legal advice prior to signing an arbitration agreement, and we will require a certificate to prove you have done so.
Can issues involving children be decided in arbitration?
Yes! Furthermore, all arbitration decisions involving children must be in the child’s best interest.
What do you have to do enforce an arbitration award?
If you are directly involved in a family arbitration, you may ask a court to enforce any of the terms in the award. Either party can file a form 32.1 Request to Enforce a Family Arbitration Award. http://ontariocourtforms.on.ca/en/family-law-rules-forms/
Can you arbitrate when there is or was Domestic Violence present?
Yes, at the arbitrators discretion. Both parties must pass a screening process which screens for domestic violence and power imbalances.