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On 1 December 2011 the Victorian Government started the Farm Debt Mediation Scheme. In Victoria it is now compulsory to offer mediation to farmers before initiating recovery proceedings on farm mortgages.
To those familiar with the NSW Farm mediation, it is very similar. In Victoria, a farmer has 21 days to respond to an offer to mediate, otherwise a creditor can commence action as they normally would.
The mediation is a structured negotiation process with the mediator being neutral and independent. The mediators role is to facilitate discussion, not provide advice. The scheme is administered by the Department of Primary Industries, and applies to;