Task Force on Family Court Intake

The Florida Bar Journal contains an excellent synopsis of recommendations by the FLAFCC-sponsored Task Force on Family Court Intake to create a universal model for processing cases from intake through outcome for Florida’s family courts.

FLAFCC members Robert J. Merlin, Judge Sandy Karlan, Linda Fieldstone, M.Ed., and Peggie Ward, Ph.D. co-chaired the tax force and shepherded its work through fruition.

Recommendations by the Self-Represented Parties in the Courts, Triage, Case Management, and Technology committees collectively represent a model for innovations that every circuit and county can adopt. A uniform family court intake system will improve efficiency, better serve the public, and help parties navigate the family court system more effectively. Read the article here.


Florida Enacts Landmark Eldercaring Coordination Statute

Thank you to The Florida Bar Family Law Section for publishing an announcement about Florida’s new eldercaring coordination statute. FLAFCC 2020-2021 President Maria Gonzalez, Linda Fieldstone, M.ED and the Honorable Michelle Morley wrote the article as a teaser for a longer article that will be published soon in the Family Law Section’s Commentator magazine. CLICK HERE to read more.


Notice of Annual Meeting

The FLAFCC Annual Meeting is at 10:00 a.m. Saturday, December 4, 2021 (Zoom log-in information to follow via e-mail on December 2, 2021)

Although we regret being unable to meet in person at the Florida Hotel & Conference Center for our Annual Meeting as originally scheduled, we look forward to meeting you virtually at the Annual Meeting.

In order to avoid scrambling through all your emails to find the meeting Zoom link, the Zoom link will be sent to you on Thursday, December 2, 2021 via email.

As members of FLAFCC you all know the value of belonging to this amazing International Organization which includes, but is not limited to:

• Access to the website with interesting and informative content
• The Family Law Review with cutting edge content
• Information throughout the year along with our Advanced Education Program that keeps us well informed of new information in our disciplines around the globe
• Numerous webinars from leaders in the field


Maria C. Gonzalez
Maria C. Gonzalez, Esq
President, FLAFCC

*official release


FLAFCC Board Member Nominations

The following members of the Florida Chapter of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts have been nominated to serve a three year term on the Board of Directors. The election will be held at the time of the Annual Membership Meeting for which notices have already gone out for December 4, 2021 at 10:00am via Zoom.

Rose Patterson
Katrina Volker

Maria C. Gonzalez
Maria C. Gonzalez, Esq.
President, FLAFCC

*official release


17th Annual Advanced Education Program Virtual November 2021 – February 2022


Please join us for workshops that offer cutting-edge information, are inspirational in content and provide practical tools for family law professionals.

Keynote address by Bill Eddy, LCSW, Esq.

Chief Innovation Officer of the High Conflict Institute “How to Work With High-Conflict Personalities”

Additional presentations on:

Cyber Threats and Impact on the Family Law Community

Risk Management and Culture: Why You REALLY Should Care About Cultural Competency

Aging and Conflict: Intersection of Professional Roles and Florida Elders

Case Law Update: Domestic Violence

Child Development: What You Need to Know to Work With Your Clients

Alternative Dispute Resolution: Emerging Practices

Find out more!

AFCC Uncategorized

Resistance, Reunification, and Relocation: Reaching for Better Solutions

A Full Day Webinar Presented by: Association of Family Law Professionals
Friday October 2, 2020 8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

About Our Presenters
Benjamin Garber, Ph.D. is a New Hampshire licensed psychologist. He provides child-centered forensic evaluations, testamentary and non-testamentary consultation to attorneys, Guardians ad litem and courts in the full range of family law matter. Dr. Garber provides training for family law professionals around the globe and consults to a variety of child-centered organizations. He publishes prolifically in both popular press
and juried professional publications on topics in child and family development and family law. His most recent book, “Mending Fences: A collaborative, cognitive-behavioral “reunification” protocol serving the best interests of the post-divorce, polarized child (Unhooked Media 2020) applies empirically proven cognitive-behavioral methods to remedy resist/refuse family dynamics. Dr. Garber is the proud father of two and
grandfather to twin toddlers.

Dr. Jan Faust is a full professor at Nova Southeastern University. She developed the Child and Adolescent Traumatic Stress Program which is a clinical training and research facility serving children exposed to traumatic events including child abuse, witnessing interpersonal violence, experiencing highly conflictual families, accidental injury and medical traumas. Dr. Faust has obtained research and foundation grants and has published her scholarly products in peer-reviewed journals and book chapters in the area of child, adolescent and family psychology and health. Her most recent publication is Reunification Family Therapy: A Treatment Manual, Published by Hogrefe 2018. Faust serves as an academic expert witness and conducts reunification family therapy, forensic psychological evaluations, social investigations/parenting plan evaluations and family mediation in her private practice.

Christina “Christy” O’Brien is a stockholder with Henderson, Franklin, Starnes & Holt, P.A. representing clients throughout Southwest Florida. She focuses her legal career in all aspects of Divorce, Marital and Family Law and has been honored for her pro bono work. Christy often handles highly emotionally-charged matters including: dissolution of marriage proceedings; custody, paternity, and child support issues; as well as domestic violence injunctions and post judgment modifications issues. Christy currently serves on The Florida Bar Family Law Rules Committee and on the Fort Myers American Youth Baseball Board of Directors.

Mr. Ryan O’Halloran focuses his practice in Family Law. He is a member of the Family Law sections of the Lee County Bar association, The Florida Bar and the American Bar Association. He regularly travels around the state and country to participate in the educational conferences and other programs offered by these organizations. He has chaired the “Law in the Mall” committee for the Lee County Bar Association.

Mr. Gus Simmons is an attorney and has been a member of the Florida Bar since 2004. He is also licensed to practice in Missouri and the Federal Courts of Florida’s Middle District. Mr. Simmons has been a Florida Supreme Court Certified Circuit Civil and Family Mediator since 2010. Further, Mr. Simmons is a member of The Fund, a licensed title insurance agent and licensed Florida Realtor.