Use of ADR in California Courts: Findings and Proposals
101 Pages Posted: 20 Mar 2008
This article explores how the courts and the ADR community might be brought into a closer working relationship to reduce court filings and to promote fair and efficient settlement of filed cases. Part One of this article briefly sets forth the current state of the California civil justice system and assesses its readiness for increased ADR use. Part Two describes the attitudes towards ADR of judges and court administrators throughout the state, as determined by both a statewide survey and in-depth personal interviews, and details some of their suggestions for enhancing ADR use. Part Three provides a brief account of the ADR providers currently existing in California, the types and numbers of cases they now handle and expect to be able to handle in the future, the problems they face, and their suggestions for more effectively integrating ADR into the judicial system. Part Four discusses proposals for increasing ADR use and for determining the types of cases for which the different ADR methods are particularly appropriate. Part Five categorizes the article's earlier proposals and observations into recommendations, according to the specific type of action (e.g., legislation, court rules, standards of court) necessary to implement them. A chronological flow-chart diagram is included with the article, which displays how one set of options might be organized into a workable, integrated dispute resolution system.
Keywords: Alternative dispute resolution, arbitration, negotiation, mediation, settlement, California courts
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