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ADR Overview

An Alternative Dispute Resolution Program (“ADR”) is in place in the Commercial Division in New York County Supreme Court. The Program is basically a mediation program, in which neutrals meet with the attorneys and parties in cases, review the facts and legal issues presented by the case, and attempt to facilitate discussions between or among the parties and their attorneys and explore the possibility of settlement. Cases are referred to the Program by order of a Division Justice and the parties must participate, but settlement is purely voluntary. The court maintains a roster of neutrals, who are required to have training in mediation. There are over 250 neutrals on the court’s roster.

The ADR Program operates pursuant to published rules, which are accessible below. After a case is referred to the Program, a mediator is designated from the roster or the parties choose one. The first ADR session must take place within 30 days from the date the mediator is designated. The litigation is not stayed during the mediation process unless the court so directs, which occurs very rarely. No later than ten days prior to the first ADR session, each party must submit to the mediator a memorandum setting forth the party’s opinions as to the facts and issues in the case, contentions, and suggestions as to the bases on which the case might be settled.

Attendance is mandatory for the first four hours of the ADR process. During the process, the mediator will typically meet with all parties and attorneys in joint sessions, during which they discuss the facts and issues and the positions of the parties. The mediator will from time to time also meet separately with each party or party representative and the attorney therefor in what are called “caucuses,” which allow the mediator to explore the demands of the parties and their reactions to the discussions in the joint session.

The mediation process is confidential and communications therein are not to be revealed outside of the ADR process. The mediator cannot be required to testify later about what happened at the mediation. Confidentiality is intended to promote frank discussion at the mediation and to ensure that nothing a party says in mediation may adversely affect the party’s case in court should the mediation fail to resolve the dispute.

There is no charge to the parties for four hours of mediation. If the mediation process continues beyond the four hours, the parties must compensate the mediator at a rate fixed by the ADR Rules or another rate if agreed upon.

December 8, 2013

Simone Abrams
60 Centre Street, Room 148
New York, New York 10007

Phone: 212-256-7986
Fax: 212-952-3772


ADR Documents:

Adobe Acrobat PDF DocumentGuide to the Alternative Dispute Resolution Program (rev. 2/2013)

Adobe Acrobat PDF DocumentRules of the Alternative Dispute Resolution Program (rev. 2/2013)

Adobe Acrobat PDF DocumentADR Initiation Form (rev. 11/2013)

Adobe Acrobat PDF DocumentEthical Standards for Mediators

Ethical Standards for Arbitrators and Neutral Evaluators

Roster of Neutrals:

Adobe Acrobat PDF DocumentA - F     Adobe Acrobat PDF DocumentG - L     Adobe Acrobat PDF DocumentM - S     Adobe Acrobat PDF DocumentT - Z

Adobe Acrobat PDF DocumentApplication to join the Roster of Neutrals









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