Login | November 22, 2017

RULES OF PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE

of the
COURT OF COMMON PLEAS
GENERAL DIVISION

of
SUMMIT COUNTY, OHIO


22. MEDIATION

22.01 Mediation Procedures

Mediation shall be conducted in accordance with the procedures set forth in this Rule and Rule 16 of Superintendence of the Courts of Ohio.

22.02 Definition

Mediation involves a neutral mediator who assists the parties and their counsel in arriving at a mutually acceptable resolution to their case.

22.03 Procedure

Cases will be referred to mediation in one of two ways: (1) voluntary referral by motion of all parties; or (2) selection by the judge of this court who is assigned to the case. The following types of cases are excluded from mediation: administrative appeals; habeas corpus; declaratory judgment; injunction; default on notes; forfeiture of property; extraordinary writs; replevin; petitions to perpetuate testimony and discovery actions.

Notices of a mutually acceptable conference date and time will be transmitted to all parties by the mediation office.

22.04 Mediation Process

(A) Scheduling and Notification

After a case has either been voluntarily submitted or referred by the Court a mediation conference (see below) will be scheduled by the Mediation Office within 120days of referral. Notices will be sent to all parties.

(B) Case Summary

Prior to the mediation conference, the parties will prepare case summaries on a form provided by the Mediation Office and submit these to the Mediation Office four (4) business days prior to the conference. These case summaries are not to be filed with the Clerk of Courts.

(C) Conference

The mediation conference is an informal session where the parties, as well as their attorneys, participate. All necessary discovery, including documents, medical records, and bills should be exchanged by the parties five (5) days prior to the conference. The Court requires that insurance representatives with adequate authority to settle the claim be present at the conference unless excused by the Court.

22.05 Final Agreement

If the parties agree to settle the case prior to the scheduled conference, the conference will be canceled by the mediator if a written settlement agreement or notice of dismissal has been filed with the court. Copies of such dismissal will be exchanged between the parties and their counsel, including pro se parties, with a courtesy copy to the mediator.

Upon reaching agreement during the mediation conference, the parties and their counsel shall reduce the agreement to writing, sign and date the same and each retain the original or a copy. The mediator shall not retain a copy of the terms of the agreement and the report to the court shall indicate only that the case is settled, who will pay court costs and who will prepare the dismissal entry.

22.06 Confidentiality

Statements made during a mediation conference do not constitute admissions against interest and cannot be used by an adverse party in evidence or for impeachment in any subsequent proceeding. If a final agreement is reached during the conference that agreement may be filed under seal to preserve confidentiality, provided that the parties request that the agreement be sealed and the court approves.

22.07 Report to the Court

In all cases where a mediation conference has been conducted the Mediation Office will, within ten (10) days, report to the assigned judge in writing whether a full or partial agreement was reached; whether efforts to settle the case have ceased or are continuing; or that mediation did not produce a final resolution.

22.08 Continuances

If a continuance of a scheduled mediation is requested and the proposed new date is within 120days of the initial referral to mediation, then the request shall be made to the mediator. If the requested date is more than 120 days after the referral to mediation, then the request must be made to the judge assigned to the case.

22.09 Discovery

Mediation shall not stay discovery, which may continue throughout the mediation process in accordance with the Civil Rules of Procedure.

22.10 Good Faith

Each party shall proceed with mediation in good faith to reach a compromise agreement. Any party referred to mediation shall perform all obligations expeditiously and shall not use the mediation process for purposes of delay or discovery in any manner other than a good faith attempt at resolution.

 

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