Family Law (30 Hours)

"Thank you so much for everything. This course has delivered in every way. I appreciate the extra support throughout."
Mid-February 2024
(Winter 2024)
Ongoing, self-directed learning, with course leader interaction and access to scheduled live sessions.


September 10 – October 15, 2024
(Fall 2024)
Tuesday, September 17, 2024 (from 4 – 6 pm, EST)
Tuesday, September 24, 2024 (from 4 – 6 pm, EST)
Tuesday, October 1, 2024 (from 4 – 6 pm, EST)
Tuesday, October 8, 2024 (from 4 – 6 pm, EST)


This 30+ hour course offers learners an accessible and engaging overview of the key legal considerations that family mediators, arbitrators and parenting coordinators need to know to engage in competent practice.

As more clients come to FDR processes without legal representation, it is increasingly important for those FDR professionals to ensure that their clients understand the legal implications of settlement proposals.

Through engaging live and recorded lectures, live Tutorials with family lawyers,  reading and case law study, exercises and test questions,  this course provides a comprehensive overview of family law.

Topics include:

  • the legal rights and responsibilities of each party on separation
  • applicable statutes, guidelines and leading case law
  • Accessible legal resources
  • The fundamental frameworks in Ontario family law on domestic contracts, related criminal and civil law matters, parenting, child support, spousal support, property division and children’s rights .
  • Procedural options and rules
  • Application of statutes, rules and case law to realistic fact scenarios

Note: this course is not intended to be a detailed review of current case law, nor is it intended to teach learners how to use Divorcemate or other software.

Textbook and Statutes,  presentation slides, supplementary materials and selected case law.


Note, If you wish you purchase a hard copy instead, please contact [email protected]
An additional shipping fee will be included.



*30 hours of family law training is required by the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General for anyone providing Parenting Coordination and Family Arbitration services. As well, the Riverdale Mediation Internship Program requires applicants to have at least 30 hours of family law training.

For further savings, see Course Packages page.

View our Course Policies & Terms and Conditions

How our Courses Work:


Each course is ‘open’ for roughly a four-week period. During that time, participants will have access to on-demand content for self-directed learning. Learners are required to complete the self-directed modules (including quizzes) before each mandatory-attendance Tutorial Session.

 Live online Tutorials are scheduled at regular intervals during the course. Attendance is mandatory (see Training Schedule for dates and times of each). Led by experienced coaches, the Tutorials feature interactive role plays, small group discussion, case study and one-on-one feedback. Participants MUST attend all scheduled tutorials in order to receive their Certificate of Completion.



Each module of each course includes quizzes. Students must achieve at least a passing grade on all quizzes to advance to the next module or course, and to receive their Certificate of Completion for that course.



NOTE: This course is made available to those who pay and register for it only. Only those students who pay and register may attend this course. It is a violation of the contract for training to permit another person to listen or to share course materials with a person who is not registered in the course.

Course Length
30 Hours
WINTER 2024 (Program will open mid-February 2024, Ongoing, self-directed learning, with course leader interaction and access to scheduled live sessions).

FALL 2024 (Program open from September 10 – October 15, 2024, with live tutorials on September 17, 24, October 1 & 8, 2024).
Online (Self-directed learning and live, interactive sessions)
Course Leader
Borzou Tabrizi
Hilary Linton, Joel Skapinker, Phil Epstein, Carol Hickman, Lorne Wolfson, Shmuel Stern, Maneesha Mehra, Cathy E. Tempesta, James Marks, Justice Sherr, Denise Badley-Castello, Natasha Lett, Matilda Kissi, Daniella Wald, Martha McCarthy, Elizabeth Hyde, Victoria Tundo, Ken Nathens, Rollie Thompson, Cheryl Williams
Required For

A great introduction! A lot of information but very informative.

The platform (Learning Management System) was easy to use. The training director was amazingly responsive to requests for info to be shared/posted.

I am terrible with technology but I found the platform (LMS) very simple to use. I enjoyed the videos, and as a non- lawyer, I found the course to be of great benefit to me as it has given me a better understanding of the law.

I like the knowledge that was shared by the facilitators, and Hillary's ability to take into consideration the diverse skill sets that we bring to the training and address these areas as most likely are the areas that we will be focusing our work.

It was a really great, interactive, engaging, hugely educational day! As an individual fairly new to the family law area, day one was incredibly informative.

I liked the fact that the trainer knew how complexity of my area of work, and immediately honed in on some key Human rights etc. Thank you.

I thought the (Zoom) format worked really well. I didn't know what to expect with a Zoom meeting all day but I have been pleasantly surprised. It still feels connected like in-person class.

The maturity of speakers who endorsed and reiterated knowledge from the texts. The reading and questions asked of the guest speakers were seamless and empowering students

Ken was fantastic and very engaging! He used very simple language to effectively teach non-lawyer students.

I really enjoyed the discussions on child support and in particular Ken Nathan's segment on the Divorcemate calculations. Lots of very useful information.

I really appreciated, Madame Hilary's real work experience, as a court base mediator her examples, her teachings, her relations i was able to associate and relate. I am very happy that i'm finally taking her training! I also appreciate her to the point, clear, informative style of teaching. I liked that she kept the focus on the actual material she had set up to deliver.

Overall amazing course. Jam-packed with information, well-paced, great discussions. The remote format was very successful. Hilary did an exceptional job answering all our questions and keeping us on track. The summary test questions really helped as a review of each day's content.

I really enjoy the personal interactions and getting to know my instructors and fellow students.

Well laid out agenda and connection of content between speakers. it all flowed well.

Exceptional speakers combined with Hilary's great instruction and feedback made for an amazing day.

An excellent overview of the field as a whole!

Exposure to foundational issues, confidence in instructors.

An extremely well-balanced approach of the breadth and depth of family law that can be covered in a 30-hour course.

Generally, I found it informative and detailed enough to feel (like) I have a grasp of the legal concepts. Presenters were positive yet realistic, and answered questions well and interacted with each other well.

Hilary’s passion for the field is infectious and so evident in how she presents her material and in the fantastic guest speakers who we had the pleasure of hearing. It is understandable why Riverdale has a great reputation as the foremost in Mediation education.

The facilitators were all excellent. It was very educational to have different presenters. Level of knowledge was very high. All were able to explain complex concepts into understandable English.

Really enjoyed hearing from different speakers – broke up the day. Appreciated the professional stories; humour is great!

Content was great. Instructor’s worked towards need of the students, based on what their needs would be.

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