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Alternative Dispute Resolution

Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) has been utilized by the Florida Court System to resolve disputes for over 30 years, starting with the creation of the first citizen dispute settlement (CDS) center in Dade County in 1975. ADR processes offer litigants court-connected opportunities to resolve their disputes without judicial intervention.

News from the Field

Proposed Revisions to Rule 10.910, Florida Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators

The Committee on Alternative Dispute Resolution Rules and Policy (Committee) invites all interested persons to comment on the attached proposed amendments to rule 10.910(b), (c), and (e), Mediator Ethics Advisory Committee (MEAC), Florida Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators.  The Committee will be filing a time sensitive petition to amend the rule as the terms of three of the existing MEAC members will expire on June 30, 2017, and there will be a need to appoint new members. 

One of the revisions to Part III (Discipline) of the mediator rules which took effect on January 1, 2017, was the addition of a fourth division to the Mediator Qualifications and Discipline Review Board (MQDRB).  See In re: Amendments to the Fla. Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators, So. 3d 795 (Fla. 2016).  However, the Committee’s proposals inadvertently did not include revisions to subdivisions (b) and (c) of rule 10.910 to incorporate the additional fourth division and its effect on the membership of the MEAC.  These proposed amendments address this issue.  Additionally, the proposed revision to subdivision (e) regarding the DRC’s publishing of MEAC opinions removes the specification that the opinions be published only in the DRC newsletter.

Although the Court will invite interested persons to submit comments once the petition is filed,  any interested person may send comments prior to the Court’s invitation to the Florida Dispute Resolution Center (DRC) by June 15, 2017, at DRCmail@flcourts.org ; Florida Dispute Resolution Center, Supreme Court Building, 500 S. Duval Street, Tallahassee, Florida 32399; or fax: (850) 922-9290. 


Vacancy Notice

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Rules and Policy Committee

The Florida Dispute Resolution Center (DRC) is currently accepting applications for 6 member appointments to the ADR Rules and Policy Committee commencing July 1, 2017.  Of the appointments:

  • At least 4 member appointments must be non-lawyer mediators who have been certified for more than 5 years; and
  • At least 1 member appointment must be a primary trainer who is also a Florida Supreme Court certified mediation training program provider.

The ADR Rules and Policy Committee provides the Supreme Court with recommendations relating to: all aspects of ADR policy & ADR rules including but not limited to model ADR practices, mediator certification and renewal requirements, continuing education requirements, mediation training program requirements and legislation.  Appointments are made by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Florida for a three-year term.  Please see AOSC13-40 for more information.


Please submit a letter of interest and current résumé to:

Florida Dispute Resolution Center
Supreme Court Building
500 S. Duval Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32399
Fax: (850) 922-9290
Email: DRCmail@flcourts.org

Deadline:  June 2, 2017


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Conference Fees
$195 Early Registration Rate by Friday, July 7
$160 Early Pre-Conference Rate by, Friday July 7

View the Conference Website
Agenda and Schedule    •    Speakers    •    Fees

Pre-Conference & Advanced Trainings
Click here to learn more about the pre-conference and advanced trainings offered this year including:
• Mediator Ethics Pre-Conference Session
• Appellate Mediator Certification Training
• Arbitration Training

Continuing Education
Attendees may earn up to 13.2 CME credits for the conference.
CLE credits will also be available, specific credit hours will be posted soon.

Conference Hotel and Location
JW Marriott, Grande Lakes Orlando
Room Rate: $119 per Night
4040 Central Florida Parkway
Orlando, Florida 32837
Hotel Reservations: Click Here to Reserve Your Room or 800-266-9432

Questions
Contact AK Consulting Group
Savannah@akconsultinggroup.org
(850) 523-4200

On October 27, 2016, the Florida Supreme Court adopted proposed amendments to the Florida Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators in re: Amendments to the Florida Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators, SC15-875 (Fla. 2016).  The amendments to the rules change the title of Part III to “Mediation Certification Applications and Discipline” to clarify that this part of the rules pertains to the qualification of applicants as well as discipline.  The amended rules have separate tracks for grievances alleging issues of good moral character in applicants and grievances alleging violations of the rules by certified and court-appointed mediators.  The Mediator Qualifications Board is renamed the Mediator Qualifications and Discipline Review Board.  A fourth division is added to the Board and the divisions are reorganized.  Among the amendments are new rule 10.850 Suspension, Decertification, Denial of Application, and Removal which includes instances requiring the automatic decertification of a mediator or denial of an application without the need for a hearing.  Notably, in rule 10.890, there are now limitations on the time in which a complaint against a mediator can be filed.

The Court revised proposed rule 10.810(d)(1) to allow the complainant only one opportunity to refile a complaint to establish the facial sufficiency of the complaint, and rule10.840(b)(7) to limit the suspension of a mediator for a period of up to one year.  The amended rules went into effect January 1, 2017. 


CME Documentation Study Ends 

Dear Florida Supreme Court Certified Mediators,

The Supreme Court Committee on ADR Rules and Policy has rescinded the requirement that the reporting of all CME activities be accompanied by backup documentation for the hours claimed beginning with renewal applications due on February 1, 2017.  The DRC is returning to the practice of random audits in which a select group of renewal applicants are notified in advance of their renewal submission date that documentation is needed.  Therefore, unless you are notified that you are under audit when you receive your next renewal notice, you may submit just the one page CME form to document your CME activities.  We hope this is welcome news.  Susan C. Marvin, Acting Chief of ADR  


The Florida Supreme Court has added to its inventory of public outreach programs by placing its own page on Facebook, with its address on the web at: https://www.facebook.com/floridasupremecourt/. “This addition to our outreach efforts is a product of the new statewide Court Communication Plan approved by the full Court in December,” said Florida Chief Justice Jorge Labarga. “It is yet another way we will tell our story to the public.” The Facebook page joins existing Supreme Court pages on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Google+. The Court also uses YouTube but embeds videos within its own webpages to minimize distractions to viewers.

The Court primarily will use its Facebook page to tell the public news about the Supreme Court family such as people winning awards, personnel recognized for lengthy service, and other soft news. This will contrast with Twitter, which the Court has used since 2009 mainly to distribute hard news such as filings in high-profile cases.


Disciplinary Proceedings and Sanctions

The Dispute Resolution Center (DRC) has put a Sanctions page in place. You can access the Sanctions page from the menu on the left by selecting Rules/Discipline/Sanctions.
 

Contact the DRC

Call 850-921-2910 or send us an email at DRCMail@flcourts.org