The North Carolina Association of Professional Family Mediators

Supporting the practice of family mediation and promoting professional excellence

Meeting Registration/Schedule/Agenda

The following meeting schedule has been set for 2019.  Additional educational programming for future meetings will be forthcoming.


Fall Meeting (Expanded Training Event) – Friday, September 13, 2019

“High Conflict Couples”, featuring Bill Eddy

Approved for 6 hours CLE only (No CME)

All public welcome – Contact to register.  An invite will then be sent to you.  It’s easy!

Event to be held at the following time, date, and location:
Starmount Forest Country Club
1 Sam Snead Drive
Greensboro, NC 27410

Registration Closes September 1, 2019 – Reserve your seat now!

Your training also includes a free copy of Bill’s book, High Conflict People in Legal Disputes!

High conflict disputes are increasing in every legal setting. They often involve one or more individuals with high-conflict behavior, characterized by:
• All-or-nothing thinking
• Unmanaged emotions
• Extreme behavior
• Preoccupation with blaming others
• Prolonged, unresolved conflict
• Drawing in many other people
• Draining energy, time and resources

Therefore, mediating high-conflict disputes requires more structure, but also more active involvement by the mediator and simple skills for the parties.

Bill Eddy will present an overview of his method known as New Ways for Mediation® -meaning new skills for clients to use during high-conflict mediation. These include some paradigm shifts from ordinary mediation and are not designed to replace what already works but rather to use when other methods like emotional exchanges and insight just don’t work. This involves teaching the clients simple skills for asking more questions,setting agendas, agreeing jointly on each small step of the process, making proposals,asking questions about proposals and respectfully responding to proposals.

In this approach, storytelling about past behavior is discouraged and the focus is kept on the future. However, throughout this process, the mediator calmly demonstrates empathy, respect and neutrality for both parties, despite angry outbursts, surprise events, tears and rigid positions. The intended result is that the parties have less need to defend themselves, they work harder at finding solutions, and they are more committed to their own decisions.


8:00 – 9:00: Registration, continental breakfast, and networking

Morning: Managing High Conflict Personalities in Mediation

9:00 – 10:30: Five common personality patterns of high conflict behavior
• Other mental health issues (depression, bipolar, substance abuse)
• Right-brain and Left-brain conflict styles
• Reducing client resistance to problem-solving

10:30-10:45: BREAK


Skills for Mediators: Connect, Structure, Educate
• Managing your own anxiety in high-conflict cases
• Managing client responsibility
• Educating parties about standards and reality
• Dealing with resistance to resolving disputes
• Guiding the decision-making process
Skills for Clients:
• Asking more Questions,
• Making Agendas
• Making and Responding to Proposals
• Finalizing Agreements

12:15-1:15: LUNCH

Afternoon: Structuring the Process to Avoid Impasse

1:15-2:45: STRUCTURING a simple process to manage high-conflict clients
• Step 1: Establishing the structure
• Step 2: Guiding the parties to make their agenda
• Step 3: Guiding the parties to make and respond to proposals
• Step 4: Finalizing and revising their agreements

2:45-3:00: BREAK

3:00-4:30: Pre-Mediation Coaching and Coaching for BIFF Responses
• Common Ethical Issues in High-Conflict Mediation

Ticket Prices:

If you are NOT an NCAPFM Member:
$180.00 for non-NCAPFM Members without CLE credit
$201.00 for non-NCAPFM Attorney-Members requesting CLE credit

If you ARE an NCAPFM Member:
$140.00 for NCAPFM Members without CLE credit
$161.00 for NCAPFM Attorney-Members requesting CLE credit

About the presenter:

William A. (“Bill”) Eddy is a lawyer, therapist and mediator, and the President of the High Conflict Institute based in San Diego, California. Mr. Eddy provides training on the subject of high-conflict personalities to lawyers, mediators, judges, mental health professionals and others. He has presented in over 30 of the United States, several provinces in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, England, Greece, France, Austria and Sweden.

As a lawyer, he is a Certified Family Law Specialist (CFLS) in California, where he has represented clients in family court for 15 years and provided divorce mediation services for over 20 years. Prior to that, he provided psychotherapy for 12 years to children, adults, couples and families in psychiatric hospitals and outpatient clinics as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW).

Mr. Eddy is the author of several books, including:
• The Future of Family Court: Structure, Skills and Less Stress;
• It’s All Your Fault!12 Tips for Managing People Who Blame Others for Everything;
• High Conflict People in Legal Disputes;
• SPLITTING: Protecting Yourself While Divorcing Someone with Borderline or Narcissistic Personality Disorder; and
• BIFF: Quick Responses to High Conflict People
• So, What’s Your Proposal?

He is the developer of the New Ways for Families® method for potentially high-conflict families, which is being implemented in several family court systems in the United States and Canada. He is also the developer of the New Ways for Mediation® method, which emphasizes more structure by the mediator and more negotiation skills for the parties – with less stress for all.

He taught Negotiation and Mediation at the University of San Diego School of Law for six years. He has served as a Special Master and as a Settlement Judge. He is currently the Senior Family Mediator at the National Conflict Resolution Center in San Diego, California. He is on the part-time faculty at the Pepperdine University School of Law and on the part-time faculty of the National Judicial College. He has been a Visiting Lecturer at Monash University Law Chambers in Melbourne, Australia for the past six years. He has presented at numerous judicial conferences and state bar conferences, and at international conferences for the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts. He is a founding board member of the Academy of Professional Family Mediators.

He obtained his law degree in 1992 from the University of San Diego, a Master of Social Work degree in 1981 from San Diego State University, and a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology in 1970 from Case Western Reserve University.


Winter Meeting – Thursday, December 5, 2019

Dr. Tina LePage – Children’s Issues

1.           Effects of divorce on children

2.           Relocating with the kids – leaving a parent behind

3.           Typical child custody rulings in NC (Do you see or know about how judges typically rule?)

4.           Child Custody and Addictions (Drugs, Alcohol, Sex)


The agenda for most meetings (Except Fall) includes:

  •  9:30 – 10:00      Coffee and conversation.
  • 10:00 – 12:00     Education program beginning promptly at 10:00
  • 12:00 – 12:30      Lunch – provided by the NCAPFM
  • 12:30 – 1:00        Membership business meeting – All members are encouraged to attend

Membership meeting agenda items should be submitted to the NCAPFM president or secretary at least two weeks prior to that meeting’s date.

Guests are welcome at any of our meetings, although there is a charge of $10.00 for any non-member who would like to receive a continuing education certificate.

If you a current member of the NCAPFM and would like to bring a guest, please register that guest through the EventBrite registration portal that is emailed to you during the month preceding the meeting.

If you are not a member of the NCAPFM and you wish to attend as our guest, we would be happy to have you.  Please contact our Meeting Registrar, Mr. Mike Musselman, by sending an email HERE.

Previous educational presentations that the NCAPFM has had at meetings:

  • The 2018 Tax Legislation and How it Affects Mediators
  • The Problem with Money – And How to Mediate Around It
  • Mediation Theory and Practice
  • Opening Statements – The Mediator’s and Counsels’
  • Divorce Financial Analysts in Mediation, Collaboration and Litigation
  • Protecting Children from the Burdens of Divorce
  • Writing Mediation Summaries – How to Avoid the Practice of Law
  • The Financial Aspects of Divorce – How Settlement Options Affect Your Client’s Financial
  • Back to the Basics:  What does John Haynes, one of family mediation’s founders, have to teach us about process?
  • Selected and Unusual Financial Issues Found in Mediation
  • The Gray Divorce – Redefining the Golden Years
  • The Social Science of Custody Schedules
  • An Introduction to Non-violent Communication