What Cases Are Appropriate For ADR?
California defines any case with claims less than $50,000 per plaintiff as
eligible for referral or Court order to any of these procedures. For claims
that exceed $50,000, the parties can agree to participate in ADR voluntarily.
How Are Cases Referred To ADR?
Referrals can be either mandatory or voluntary, that is, ordered by the Court
or requested by the parties at their own initiative at any time.
In considering a case for referral to arbitration, mediation or a settlement
conference, the Court examines each case individually in consultation with
counsel to determine which process is the most appropriate alternative. After
consultation, cases are referred to arbitration, mediation or settlement
conference in one of three ways:
The plaintiff requests arbitration, mediation or a settlement conference in
writing and agrees that the award per plaintiff will not exceed $50,000.
Both parties request arbitration, mediation or a settlement conference and
agree that there is no upper limit on the award.
The judge determines that the case is appropriate for arbitration, mediation or
a settlement conference and orders one of the processes.