A Goldilocks Approach for Mediation Standards


When Frank Sander proposed the “multi-door courthouse” at the Pound Conference in 1976, he probably could not have imagined how widespread the use of mediation would be today in the United States and around the world. As just one example, last year, JAMS mediators handled over 10,000 matters in the United States and abroad.

As the use of mediation has grown across this country and internationally, standards have been developed to guide mediation practice. With the recent adoption of the United Nations Convention on International Settlement Agreements Resulting from Mediation (commonly known as the Singapore Convention), a question has arisen whether the creation of uniform mediation standards and training guidelines is desirable and practical. I believe that it is important to have standards and guidelines – and that they should be flexible, permitting mediators, parties, and lawyers to decide how to handle each case.

Originally published on Indisputably.org.

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