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The Association of
the Bar of the City of New York
MEDIATION STANDARDS CHECKLIST
As courts, industries, businesses and other organizations develop mediation programs, standards will be critical to fair and effective programs, and to the acceptance and use of these programs by disputants and their advisors.
While mediation providers may choose to follow an existing code of conduct [see accompanying resource list], they often develop quality standards tailored to their own needs. Typically, in developing standards, providers research existing codes and cull relevant sections. This is a time-consuming and inefficient process.
The Committee on Alternative Dispute Resolution of The Association of the Bar of the City of New York has compiled a list of topics, in outline form, as a guide to assist system designers. This list is not intended to be exhaustive; system designers are encouraged to be innovative and creative. To our knowledge, such a list is not currently available. The accompanying guide is intended to make the task of developing mediation standards more efficient and to assist in creating effective standards.
It is hoped that this list will help mediation providers including, but not limited to court programs, internal corporate ADR programs, community mediation programs, specialized mediation programs, and states that develop mediation standards to consider and identify issues to include in their standards.
Since this list may be consulted by program developers who are not familiar with the terms used or with mediation concepts, a glossary of terms and a resource list of some representative mediation codes and standards follow for users reference.
For additional information, please contact The Association of the Bar of the City of New York at 212-382-6623.
3. Mediator Ethics
4. Mediation Provider Organization Requirements
(Individuals not associated with programs should consider self-monitoring on the following issues, until formal licensing/certification requirements are instituted.)
The purpose of this glossary is to provide some basic orientation for Checklist users who are not familiar with mediation terms used in the Checklist. There are a variety of ways to define the terms; this should be considered a general guide, not a definitive one. Checklist users who are not familiar with mediation concepts are encouraged to consult with mediation professionals in drawing up their Standards.
Mediation A process in which a neutral third person assists disputing parties to reach a mutually acceptable resolution.
Types of mediation approaches Some examples of mediation approaches: "Facilitative" where the mediator works on assisting the parties to communicate and collaborate on their resolution; "Evaluative" where the mediator also provides an opinion as to the likely outcome of issues or of the entire dispute if it should go to litigation or another adjudicative procedure.
Co-mediation Two mediators mediating a case together.
Apprenticeship A less experienced mediator who works under supervision before taking on cases.
Self-determination The right of the parties to make their own uncoerced decisions regarding their case.
Voluntary participation in the process The right of the parties to choose whether or not to participate in mediation.
Informed and voluntary decision-making by parties The parties making a decision based on knowledge of the consequences of the decision and of any waiver of rights that may result.
Mediation advocate or legal representative An individual who serves as an agent and advocate for the party, advising, counseling, and/or presenting the party's views. A representative does not make decisions on the party's behalf.
Neutrality Freedom from bias relating to the issues in a mediation. It is generally recognized that absolute neutrality is impossible to achieve.
Impartiality -- Freedom from favoritism and bias in word, action and appearance.
Mediator conflict of interest A pre-existing relationship or a condition that might result in the mediator benefiting from a particular outcome of the mediation.
Confidentiality What is said or produced in the session that the parties and/or the mediator agree not to reveal outside the mediation session.
Caucus A private meeting between the mediator and one party and the partys representative.
Joint session A meeting of the parties together with the mediator.
Mediation Provider Organization Institution or organization offering, managing or administering mediation services.
Checklist users may find it helpful to review some of these resources to get ideas about how to structure their codes and standards.
"A Due Process Protocol for
Mediation and Arbitration of Statutory Disputes Arising Out of
the Employment Relationship," 5/9/95
"Ethical Standards of Professional
"Model Standards of Conduct for
"Quality Assurances Statement,"
Florida Mediation Code of Conduct - call 850-921-2910 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Standards for Private and Public
Mediators in the State of Hawaii
Standards of Ethics and Professional
Responsibility for Certified Mediators in Virginia
Commission on Ethics and Standards in
A number of state mediation codes and standards of practice for specialized areas are listed on the web page of the Mediator Information & Resource Center (MIRC) at << www.mediate.com/ethics >>
January 26, 2000