Are you unable to mediate at the moment and considering requesting a Leave of Absence?
This article explains the provisions for a Leave of Absence under the National Mediator Accreditation System (NMAS) for Accredited Mediators NMAS.
This first part of the post is ONLY relevant to accredited mediators NMAS.
Scroll down for information for FDRPs who are seeking a leave of absence.
What is a Leave of Absence?
The National Mediator Accreditation System has a provision to allow you to take a leave of absence under specific circumstances. Download a copy of the NMAS and review page 7 – Section 4 Leave of Absence
A mediator may seek a leave of absence on the basis of:
- career or
- other special circumstance
To do this you must provide evidence to Mediation Institute of the following:
- the special circumstances that apply in your case
- the length of time you are seeking leave for.
How long can I request?
You can choose based on your circumstances however there are different rules depending on whether you request up to 12 months or more than 12 months.
For periods of 12 months or less
If you request 12 months or less leave of abscence you will be able to renew normally at the end of the period of time.
During the Leave of Absence
We will remove your name from the NMAS Register for the duration of your period of leave of absence.
We will extend your accreditation period by the length of time that you have the period of Leave of Absence for.
You can choose to be on the leave of absence for the entire period or ask to be reinstated prior to the period ending.
You have an extended trip overseas and you will not be mediating during your travels. You want a 6 month leave of absence. Your renewal is due in 4 months.
Your request would be to start the leave of absence now for six months. That would extend your renewal date by 4 months allowing you to return prior to your renewal.
We extend your renewal date by 6 months and take your name down from the register.
If you want your Membership and Accreditation re-instated prior to renewal you will need to provide evidence that you have current Professional Indemnity Insurance.
You have been diagnosed with a serious illness and are focusing all your attention on your health. You request a 12 month leave of absence to allow you time. We extend your renewal date by 12 months and take your name down from the National Register.
What if I need more than 12 months?
If your Leave of Absence is more than 12 months you will have to apply for reinstatement rather than renewal as usual.
We will take your name down from the National Register and provide you with a Leave of Absence Certificate.
- Remove your name from the NMAS Register for the period of leave of absence
- You must comply with the requirements to have your accreditation re-instated.
Requirements for re-instatement of accreditation
When you are ready for re-instatement after a period of leave of absence, lapsed or suspended membership you must provide the following information:
- the date from which you were first granted accreditation under NMAS and the period of leave of absence or date that your accreditation lapsed or was suspended.
- Meet the approval requirements set out in Section 2.1 of the NMAS e.g. have Professional Indemnity Insurance and remain “of good character” .
- Meet the renewal requirements described in Section 3 in the two years prior to the date that you are seeking re-instatement from e.g. PD and practice hour requirements.
- If you can’t meet the requirements due to not practicing or not participating in professional development you will be required to be re-assessed for competence and/or participate in gap training and re-assessment
- Meet any special conditions imposed at the time of your suspension or leave of absence
- You will be re-instated from the date that we determine you have met the requirements for accreditation.
- You can only take advantage of this opportunity once every 4 years i.e. you can’t request a leave of absence for every holiday you take.
We are not permitted to approve an application for leave of absence that commences more than two months prior to the day upon which application for leave of absence is made.
You must also notify the Attorney Generals Practitioner Registration Department if you are seeking a leave of absence from your FDR work.
If you are a NMAS Mediator and FDRP Mediation Institute has an obligation to inform the Attorney Generals Department that you are taking a leave of absence from your NMAS Accreditation. This will breach the conditions on your FDR Registration if it is conditional on you having and maintaining NMAS Accreditation.