Rule 67.3. Private Mediation
Arizona Revised Statutes AnnotatedRules of Family Law Procedure
17B A.R.S. Rules Fam.Law Proc., Rule 67.3
Formerly cited as AZ ST RFLP Rule 67(B)
Rule 67.3. Private Mediation
(a) Generally. Private mediation is a voluntary and confidential process in which parties confer with a neutral mediator to help them resolve the dispute. The parties may retain a private mediator under Rule 67.3(d), or a private mediator may be selected by the court under Rule 67.3(e). Although the court may order a party to appear for a mediation conference, participation in mediation is voluntary.
(d) Privately Retained Mediator. The parties may agree to, and jointly select, a private mediator. The parties must sign and file a notice that states that private mediation will take place, identifies the name of the jointly selected mediator, and specifies the date set for the initial mediation conference.
(1) Request. The parties may ask the court to appoint an active judge pro tempore in good standing to conduct a private mediation. The request must be accompanied by a signed affidavit stating that the judge pro tempore is active and in good standing and was appointed by the Supreme Court at the request of the presiding judge of the superior court in that county.
(3) Effect. A Decree of Dissolution signed by a judge pro tempore under subpart (g)(2) has the same force and effect as a Decree of Dissolution signed by a judge or court commissioner. The judge pro tempore must promptly deliver the signed decree to the judge who authorized the judge pro tempore to conduct the mediation, and that judge will file the decree and enter it into the court's minutes.
(4) Payment for a Judge Pro Tempore's Services. The parties may pay a judge pro tempore for his or her services as a private mediator. But the parties may not pay, and the judge pro tempore may not ask them for, remuneration or anything of value for his or her service as a judge pro tempore involving the approval of agreements, or for signing a Decree of Dissolution.
(h) Discretion to Order Mediation. On agreement of the parties, the court may enter an order referring a matter to mediation. The court may decline to refer a matter to mediation if it appears that mediation is inappropriate because of parental unfitness, substance abuse, mental incapacity, domestic violence, or other good cause, or because mediation will cause undue delay.
(1) Limit on Referring a Matter to Mediation. In a case concerning legal decision-making or parenting time, if an order of protection is in effect involving the parties or if the court finds that a party's conduct would justify the entry of a protective order, the court may order mediation or refer the parties to mediation only if policies and procedures are in place that protect the victim from harm, harassment, or intimidation.
(2) Disclosure. Before a mediation, the court must notify parties in writing or orally in open court of their right to ask to waive mediation, or to ask the court to order reasonable procedures at the mediation, to protect a victim of domestic violence. A party is not required to appear for mediation pending the court's ruling on such a request.
(2) Persons Who May Attend. The mediator may permit persons other than parties and their counsel to attend or participate in a mediation, if those other persons agree in writing to be bound by this rule's confidentiality provisions. Counsel for a party may be excluded from a private mediation conference only if the party and counsel agree. However, a conciliation court mediator or conciliation court policy may authorize the exclusion of counsel.
(1) By the Parties. The parties must notify the court when the mediation has concluded and advise the court of any agreements that fully resolve their issues. The parties must provide this notice not later than 10 days after the mediation concludes, but also not later than 10 days before the date set for trial or hearing.
(2) By the Mediator. If the parties reach a partial agreement or no agreement during mediation, the mediator must file a brief report with the court stating that the parties met and attempted to resolve their differences but that the mediation was unsuccessful. The report also must state any agreements the parties reached and the remaining unresolved issues. The mediator must not report the parties' respective positions and must not comment on or offer any opinion about a party's position. The mediator also may advise the court if the parties or the mediator believes that further mediation would be helpful for resolving the remaining issues.
Added Aug. 30, 2018, effective Jan. 1, 2019.
17B A. R. S. Rules Fam. Law Proc., Rule 67.3, AZ ST RFLP Rule 67.3
State Court Rules are current with amendments received and effective through 4/1/22. The Code of Judicial Administration is current with amendments received through 4/1/22.
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