Florida Mediator Michael S. Orfinger Is Primary Trainer for Appellate Mediation Certification Course

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A principal of Upchurch Watson White & Max Mediation Group will provide valuable training to aspiring appellate mediators in Tampa later this month. Appellate mediation is the newest mediator practice area with certification now established by the Florida Supreme Court.

Florida mediator Michael S. Orfinger

Michael S. Orfinger

Michael S. Orfinger, a principal of Florida- and Alabama-based Upchurch Watson White & Max Mediation Group, will be the primary trainer for Appellate Mediation Certification Training at the University of South Florida in Tampa on Sept. 27, 2013.

As the course description states, "Appellate mediation is the newest area of mediator certification established by the Florida Supreme Court. Court rules now govern the referral of Florida appellate cases to mediation, and parties can only satisfy the order of referral by using a certified appellate mediator."

This particular course, from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., is approved by the Florida Bar (1300318N) for 8.5 general CLER credits, including 2 hours of ethics. For mediators, portions of this course are eligible for CME credit, but mediators are required to self-report hours applicable to their areas of certification at the time of their renewal.

The primary instructor, Mr. Orfinger, is a Florida Supreme Court Certified Appellate and Circuit Civil Mediator; Certified U.S. District Court Mediator, Middle District of Florida; a Florida Qualified Arbitrator; a Fellow of the Academy of Court Appointed Masters; and has a Martindale-Hubbell rating of AV. Mr. Orfinger was previously a shareholder with the law firm of Smith, Hood, Perkins, Loucks, Stout & Orfinger, P.A., and he has practiced law in Central Florida since 1989. He has spoken at numerous continuing legal education seminars, and has been a contributing author to various continuing legal education publications of the Florida Bar.

Registering online for his USF course at http://www.crc.usf.edu with credit or debit card payment is the best way to confirm space, according to the program brochure. Those who try to register by mail or fax when the course is full -- at 40 participants -- will be contacted via email. A confirmation letter will be sent upon receipt of registration and payment if space is available. No registration is confirmed until full payment is received. On-site registration will be available at 8 a.m. Sept. 27 if the course is not full, but those who register at least 10 working days prior to class start date will save $20 on the full fee of $295 (includes refreshments).

There are additional requirements for certification by the Florida Supreme Court which are described in the Florida Rules for Certified and Court Appointed Mediators (see http://www.flcourts.org/gen_public/adr/index.shtml).

About Upchurch Watson White & Max: A nationally leading mediation specialty firm, Upchurch Watson White & Max is known for facilitating reasonable agreements to resolve complex issues. From five offices in Florida and Alabama, Supreme Court certified attorney mediators with wide-ranging practice areas serve as court-appointed and privately employed mediators, arbitrators and third-party neutral case managers, implementing innovative methods of alternative dispute resolution across the country. On the Web: uww-adr.com.

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Catherine Klasne
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