Mackenzie Clinic is a unique private group practice offering clinical, forensic and child legal services for individuals and families. We are comprised of highly trained social work clinicians and legal counsel each with decades of experience in various settings and different populations.
Our goal is to help you improve your overall wellness and life satisfaction by following the best clinical practices informed by the latest empirical research. Our professionals are client-centered and tailor their approach to meet your specific needs.
We strive to ensure a comprehensive, thoughtful and objective analysis of complex legal and psychological issues.
Dr. Polak holds a Master of Social Work degree and a PhD from the Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work, University of Toronto. She is a registered social worker and has been awarded the designation of accredited family mediation (Acc.FM) by the Ontario Association for Family Mediation. Her mediation/negotiation training has included Harvard Law School’s Negotiation and Leadership Program.
Dr. Polak’s private practice provides specialized services related to families impacted by separation and divorce including: parenting plan evaluation (S.30 assessments), family mediation, reintegration therapy, voice of the child reports, parenting coordination, and therapeutic services for children and families impacted by divorce.
Her doctoral research focused on the practice of reintegration therapy for children who resist parental contact post-separation. She has published in peer-reviewed journals and book chapters on topics related to separated/divorced families involved with the court system. She is a frequent presenter at national and international professional and academic conferences in the area of high conflict separation/divorce and parent-child contact problems. Dr. Polak is a past speaker at the Family Law Summit, the Six Minute Family Law Lawyer, and the Association for Family and Conciliation Courts.
Dr. Polak was the recipient of the Nicolas Bala Award for Excellence in Children & Family Law in October 2016. She is a member of the Ontario College of Social Workers, Ontario Association of Social Workers, Association of Family and Conciliation Courts, and the Ontario Association of Family Mediators. She is Past President of the Board of Directors for the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts, Ontario Chapter.
Family Law/Specialized clinical forensic services
Training/Continuing Professional Education
Diana Polak is a former psychologist from her native country of Uruguay/Argentina. She completed a Master of Social Work degree from Wurzweiler School of Social Work, New York and has been practicing as a registered social worker for over 15 years. Diana has extensive clinical experience in the fields of mood disorders, mental health, marriage and couple’s counselling, domestic violence, and child protection.
Diana specializes in helping couples who are experiencing relationship distress, helping separated parents arrive at joint decisions with respect to their children. Diana’s approach to working with couples focuses on decreasing conflict and enhancing positive interactions within their relationship.
Family/Law Forensic Services (mediation, parent coordination, reunification therapy, parenting plan assessments)
Marriage and Couples Therapy
Ricardo Theoduloz has spent upwards of ten years in the field of child welfare. Ricardo’s skill in working with families experiencing conflict was gained through his years of involvement with the High Conflict Forum. The Forum aimed to enhance the awareness of the changes facing children and parents who were coping with post-separation conflict. This invaluable experience furthered Ricardo's understanding of the myriad of approaches to assisting these families, and the importance of a finding a child-centred approach including communication and collaboration with all involved parties.
Ricardo’s private practice assists families impacted by separation and divorce through individual counselling, parenting plan evaluations, parent coaching and supported access.
Parenting Plan Evaluations
Voice of the Child Reports
Marice is a clinical social worker who has more than ten years of experience working with children, youth and families with a focus on helping families navigate crises and challenging situations. Following the completion of a Master of Social Work degree at Carleton University, Marice's primary field of work was child abuse and neglect through her work at SickKids Hospital and a local child welfare agency. Through years of conducting investigations and extensive training, Marice has developed a deep understanding of the impacts of high conflict, exposure to conflict/violence, abuse, neglect, addiction and mental health issues on child and youth development and well-being. Her years of work with families experiencing significant post-separation conflict have provided Marice with the skills to help children and youth identify and communicate their preferences while working with parents to de-escalate conflict and develop skills for effective co-parenting. Marice's compassion and knowledge of child development theory, attachment theory and family systems theory serve as the foundation for her thorough assessments and strengths-based treatment and service plans.
Parenting Plan Evaluations
Voice of the Child Reports
Jessica Furman is a clinical social worker with undergraduate and graduate degrees in Social Work from McMaster University and Ryerson University. Jessica has been practicing social work for over 15 years and has worked as a clinical therapist in diverse settings including children's mental health settings and social service community settings.
Jessica has specialized knowledge and experience working in and alongside the child welfare system. She has experience running group programs for women and children exposed to domestic violence, as well as child focused groups for parents and children experiencing anxiety. Ms. Furman is a licensed “Caring Dad’s” facilitator with experience running groups for fathers with a history of domestic violence with a focus on parenting post-separation and divorce.
Jessica also worked in the priority access for child welfare program while working in children’s mental health, providing therapeutic intervention for families with complex needs.
Jessica offers client-centered therapy using an attachment-informed and trauma-informed lens. Working from an attachment-informed lens means Jessica values relationships and connection. Working from a trauma-informed lens means Jessica understands how your history and lived experiences impacts your beliefs, values, and attitudes. Jessica utilizes various modalities to help you make meaning of your experiences. including: Narrative, Cognitive Behavioural, Solution-Focused, Brief Solution-Focused Therapy and Mindfulness approaches.
Jessica has lived and worked all over the world including Sweden, Israel, Ireland and Finland. She enjoys traveling and spending time with family.
Individual and Child Therapy
Parent Counselling for Fathers
Maytal is a registered clinical social worker who brings 10+ years of experience working with children and families. She graduated from the University of Toronto with a Master’s degree in Social Work and is an accredited family mediator and parenting coach.
Maytal’s primary area of focus is dispute resolution and supporting clients in high conflict situations, separation, and divorce. She has always worked to prioritize the voice and perspective of children through her work in child protection and has extensive experience working with children at different developmental stages. Maytal has led investigations of child abuse and neglect, specializing in creating agreements that set the groundwork for productive and child-focused post-separation family relationships.
In addition to her direct work in child welfare, Maytal brings expertise in delivering clinical services and coaching to support individuals and couples in high conflict situations.
Maytal is fluent in English and Hebrew. Outside of work she enjoys spending time with friends, family and her dogs. She also has a passion for musicals and theater.
Until June 1, 2019, when he retired from the Ontario Public Service, Dan Goldberg was General Counsel, Office of the Children’s Lawyer, Ministry of the Attorney General of Ontario. For 35 years Dan represented children in custody/access and child protection cases. Dan has organized numerous continuing legal educational programs (Law Society of Ontario, OBA, OCL, High Conflict Forum) and has been a speaker at CLE conferences both in Canada and the United States. Dan has presented to judges at judicial education conferences on various family law topics. Dan has been a guest lecturer on Family and Children’s Law at McGill University, Queen’s University, University of Toronto, University of Ottawa, Osgoode Hall Law School (LL.B. and LL.M. programs). Dan has appeared at all levels of court including before the Supreme Court of Canada successfully arguing on the issue of relocation rights of custodial parents (Gordon v. Goertz). Dan has written articles on parental alienation, parental relocation rights, grandparent-grandchild access, the impact of religion in custody/access disputes, judicial interviews of children, and on the legal representation of children in both child protection cases as well as custody/access disputes. In the fall of 2021, Dan joined the Mackenzie Clinic team bringing with him his extensive experience and expertise in family law disputes involving children.
Voice of the Child Reports
Independent Legal Representation for children in Parenting Plan (custody/access) Disputes
Consultation to lawyers, parents and mental health professionals on family law matters pertaining to children
Training/Continuing Professional Education
Kristine Chandler is a clinical social worker with more than ten years of experience working with children, youth, and their families. Following completion of a specialist degree in Crime, Law, Deviance and Sociology, Kristine graduated with a Master of Social Work degree at the University of Toronto. Kristine’s primary focus of work has been child and youth mental health, through her career as a school social worker. Throughout the years, Kristine has supported families and their children navigate complex societal barriers impacting children’s well-being. Kristine practices from a trauma-informed lens, acknowledging the strong intersection of historical family trauma, inter-generational substance misuse and mental health challenges, that impact child/youth development. Kristine’s passion in her work is assessing and engaging highly at-risk children/youth, to ensure that their needs and best interests are met. In addition, her work includes assisting families identify common goals to determine positive outcomes for parent-child relationships and reduce familial conflict.
If you are interested in employment with Mackenzie Clinic, please submit your curriculum vitae with a cover letter. We are looking forward to working with you!
Fees will vary from $180-$450 per hour depending on the clinician and the specific service provided. Your extended health care benefits plan may fully or partially cover the fees for service. Please check your benefits plan, under ‘counselling services’, for information regarding coverage for services provided by a “registered social worker” or “registered mental health professional”.
You will be provided with a receipt to submit to your insurance company. Mackenzie Clinic will not bill your third-party health insurance. Payment is accepted in the form of EMT, personal check, or credit card unless specified in advance of service.
Clinical services (e.g., psychotherapy) are billed based on a 55-minute clinical hour. Payment is requested in full at the time of service. Mackenzie Clinic does not communicate with or bill any third party (insurance) carriers.
Court-related (forensic) services (e.g., mediation, parenting coordination, parenting plan evaluation) are billed based on a 60-minute hour. Payment is either due in full at the time of service and/or is deducted from retainer funds held against anticipated costs. These details are clarified in advance of service provision as part of a Service Agreement that your clinician at Mackenzie Clinic will prepare specific to the proposed service.
To request service from Dr. Polak, prospective clients are asked to email email@example.com. Legal counsel can contact Dr. Polak directly to inquire about specific services and availability for service.