77 Bloor Street West, Suite 600  Toronto, Ontario  M5S 1M2

416 489 8890  steve@benmor.com

our Services


Over 30 years ago, I founded Benmor Family Law Group to help separating spouses settle their affairs and begin the next chapter of their lives with ease.

Through decades of acrimonious court hearings, I witnessed the emotional and financial distress my clients suffered – even when they succeeded at trial.

Recognizing the need for a better solution, I earned my designation as a “Certified Family Mediator” from the Alternative Dispute Resolution Institute of Ontario, a “Specialist in Parenting Coordination” from The Family Dispute Resolution Institute of Ontario and became accredited as a Collaborative Family Lawyer.

Please read my Curriculum Vitae to gain a better understanding of my credentials, professional achievements, leadership posts, published papers and successful trial decisions.

As you can see, I am one of Toronto’s 24 Certified Specialists in Family Law, one of Canada’s 56 Fellows of the prestigious International Academy of Family Lawyers and one of very few Canadian lawyers with a Master of Laws in Family Law. 

With my honed ability to efficiently achieve successful divorce settlements, I have helped thousands of families.

I bring unparalleled experience in settling divorce cases for families with significant wealth and assets. 

Family mediation is the least expensive and fastest way to divorce. But when you are hiring a divorce professional, it is critical that you choose the person who not only has the most tools at their disposal, but also the discernment to know which tool to use, and when.

I am one of the only divorce professionals in Canada who is licensed, certified and accredited in all out-of-court divorce options.

Most spouses do not know that in order to mediate high conflict parenting disputes, high net worth divorces or complex financial cases, the mediator requires a sophisticated financial understanding and in-depth knowledge of divorce law, tax law, real estate law, corporate law and trust law - subjects that I have become proficient in after three decades helping separating spouses reach agreements and avoid disagreements over the issues of parenting schedules, support and property division.

I offer all forms of family dispute resolutions services such as mediation, mediation/arbitration, arbitration, collaborative family law, parenting coordination and divorce coaching.

If you are interested in avoiding Divorce Court and coming to a successful settlement through Family Mediation, then call or email my Senior Law Clerk Marigona at 416-489-8890 or marigona@benmor.com to begin the path to a successful divorce settlement.

My hourly rate is $375 per spouse (or $750 per couple) and I will provide an estimate of the time/retainer needed to help you after our first teleconference.

Let me help you reach a speedy and inexpensive settlement for your family so that you can move on with your life.


What is family mediation?

Family mediation is a fast, inexpensive and confidential process to reach a settlement that is then captured in a signed Separation Agreement that resolves all issues between the spouses following separation. In mediation, your mediator facilitates the identification, communication and resolution of all issues that the spouses do not agree upon including parenting schedules, child support, spousal support, relocation, property settlements, the matrimonial home and pensions. By promoting open dialogue and cooperation, your mediator reduces the emotional cost associated with separation and helps maintain civility, respect and empathy throughout the process, which is critical if you have children together. Your mediator will also be available to resolve future disagreements should they arise.

How does mediation differ from going to family court?

Many people (mistakenly) think that the first step after separation is to hire a lawyer and go to court. In such cases, that first step is seen as an act of aggression by the other spouse, that thereby invites a reciprocal aggressive response from the other spouse, and then so the cycle continues. In mediation, your mediator works with both spouses individually to reach a mutually acceptable agreement – without acrimony, without litigation and without high costs. The process encourages communication, problem-solving and a focus on the well-being of all involved, especially your children. Litigation fosters selfishness, disagreement and conflict. Mediation fosters cooperative problem-solving, by taking a more holistic approach and finding creative solutions. One of the key aspects of mediation is the use of one singular professional, your mediator, to guide the entire process from beginning to end until a fair settlement is achieved.

Is mediation suitable for all family disputes?

Because mediation is so flexible, it offers many more benefits to all sorts of families, however the conflict, complexity or personalities. Skilled mediators can craft a process that will ensure safety, progress and privacy. Zoom technology and break-out rooms have improved the accessibility to low-cost, comfortable and safe mediation processes. In fact, many cases that started in court – for whatever their reasons were – later are settled in mediation. Also, the spouses and their lawyers can select a mediator that has the requisite skill, knowledge and acumen to settle the case.

What are the benefits of choosing mediation?

By promoting open dialogue and cooperation, mediation aims to achieve a fair settlement while helping couples maintain civility, respect and empathy throughout the process. Mediation minimizes cost, delay and conflict while working towards a post-separation life for each spouse and their children. It is much more cost-effective than court because the focus in mediation is on negotiation and settlement, rather than on formalities, court documents, hearings and advocacy. Courtroom battles cost families a huge amount in lawyer fees, and so mediation saves spouses significant expense, avoids the delays of prolonged legal proceedings and eliminates contentious litigation. Mediation allows couples to maintain control over the decisions that affect their lives, rather than leaving them in the hands of a judge. This results in more satisfying outcomes and a higher likelihood of long-term compliance with the settlement terms.

How do I get started with family mediation?

To schedule a mediation with Steve Benmor, call or email his senior law clerk Marigona at 416-489-8890 or marigona@benmor.com to learn about the mediation process and costs, and to guide you to a successful divorce settlement.

How long does mediation usually take?

The duration of mediation varies depending on the level of cooperation of the spouses, their commitment to the process, the complexity of the legal issues, the speed of the financial disclosure exchanged and the willingness of the spouses to achieve a fair settlement. Some mediations can be resolved in just one day, while others may require a few sessions. In any case, settling a case in mediation is definitely faster, cheaper and more satisfying that family court.

Is a mediator impartial and unbiased?

Mediators are educated, skilled, certified and trained third party neutrals. They do not take sides. Your mediator firstly creates a safe space. They then foster an understanding of alternative viewpoints and facilitates collaboration between the spouses and lawyers. Your mediator will use their experience and expertise to move each spouse towards a settlement in caucus without causing any embarrassment. At all times, your mediator ensures fairness, safety and balance.

What if we can't agree on everything during mediation?

Not all mediations achieve a full settlement. While most mediations settle the entire case, some settle only parts of the case and then leave the spouses with other avenues to resolve the outstanding issues. Often time the work done in mediation will move the spouses to a subsequent settlement with the remaining issues. The outstanding issues are often better understood in meditation so that each spouse can re-consider their position, risks and possible outcomes outside of mediation.

Is mediation legally binding?

Mediation results in a Memorandum of Understanding that captures all of the terms that the spouses settled in mediation. The Memorandum of Understanding is then used by the lawyers to draft a Separation Agreement that contains all the necessary clauses. If the spouses cannot agree on the form or content of the Separation Agreement, then they can return to the mediator to resolve the finalization of the Separation Agreement. The Separation Agreement is valid, binding and enforceable in Ontario, just like a court order.

Are mediation sessions confidential?

All communications, conversations, admissions and documents in mediation are held in strict confidence. Neither spouse nor lawyer can use anything outside of mediation unless they both all agree. This strict rule of confidentiality and secrecy is what makes mediation so successful. In mediation, neither spouse needs to be worried that admissions, concessions or proposals could be used in court. It is this very reason why skilled mediators settle cases.