ADR

 Alternative Dispute Resolution for the 1st JD,
Supreme Court, Civil Branch, New York County

Welcome to the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Program for the New York County Supreme Court. We strive to provide litigants with an opportunity to resolve their disputes expeditiously through court-annexed mediation, neutral evaluation, and other settlement opportunities. The New York County Supreme Court is committed to promoting the appropriate use of mediation and other forms of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) as a means of resolving disputes and conflicts peacefully. The New York County Supreme Court offers parties access mediation and other ADR services in matrimonial, general civil, and commercial law disputes. This court is dedicated to providing innovative and varied alternatives to litigation which might be more in line with litigants’ needs and goals than a trial.

During the Coronavirus (Covid-19) Pandemic, New York County Supreme Court is offering remote appropriate dispute resolution services.

It is the policy of the Unified Court System to encourage the resolution of civil legal disputes by methods including mediation, arbitration, neutral evaluation, in-court settlement practices, and summary jury and bench trials. All civil actions or proceedings heard in the Supreme Court, Court of Claims, County Court, Family Court, Surrogate’s Court, District Court, City Court, and New York City Civil Court shall be presumptively eligible for early referral to an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) process unless otherwise excluded. Courts may refer parties to an ADR process at any time after an action has been commenced and are encouraged to do so at the earliest appropriate opportunity.

New York County Supreme Court is committed to finding less costly and innovative ways of resolving matters and offers the following ADR programs:

  • Presumptive Early Mediation for Non-Commercial Division Cases Commercial Division ADR Program
  • Early Neutral Evaluation services for civil matters
  • Matrimonial Neutral Evaluation Program
  • Matrimonial Mediation Program
  • Early Settlement Conference Parts
  • Judicial Mediation Part
  • Mediation Non-Jury Program
  • Early Settlement Med-Mal Program
  • Early Resolution Blockbuster Program
  • Non-Jury Post-Note Blockbuster Calendars
  • Asbestos Settlement Days
  • Blockbuster Program for Motor Vehicle Cases

If you have a matter that is currently pending in New York County Supreme Court that you would like considered for reference to ADR, or if you have a question concerning ADR in New York County Supreme Court, please contact Jean Norton, ADR Coordinator for New York County Supreme Court, at jnorton@nycourts.gov.

 THE NEW YORK COUNTY SUPREME COURT COMMERCIAL DIVISION ADR PROGRAMS

The Commercial Division in New York County Supreme Court operates the Commercial Division Alternative Dispute Resolution Program. The Program is a mediation program. Neutrals meet with the attorneys and parties in Commercial Division cases, review the facts and legal issues presented by the case, and attempt to facilitate discussions between or among the parties and their attorneys and explore the possibility of settlement. Below you will find links to the Program rules and procedures, as well as the roster of neutrals and relevant forms.

Rules Mandatory Mediation of Certain Commercial Cases Administrative Orders for Mediation of Non-Division Commercial Cases: Roster Forms
Rules and Procedures of the Alternative Dispute Resolution Program Order dated January 22, 2019
Supplemental Order Dated September 27, 2017
Order dated April 19, 2017
Order dated January 18, 2019
Order dated April 19, 2017
Order dated May 24, 2016
The Roster of Neutrals for Commercial Division:
A-F G-L M-S T-Z
Forms:
ADR Initiation Form (rev. 2/5/2019)
ADR Initiation Form (Pilot) (rev. 7/16/2019)
Mediator Report Form (9/25/19)
Attorney ADR Certification Form (Commercial Division Rule 10)

The Program is accepting applications for openings on the Roster. Candidates should submit applications only if they meet the following criteria: ten years of experience as a commercial law practitioner and 40 hours of Part 146 approved mediation training (24 hours in basic mediation training and 16 hours in commercial mediation techniques). Prior experience as a mediator is not required but is preferred.

APPLICATION FOR COURT ROSTER MEDIATORS

NEUTRAL EVALUATION PROGRAM

Cases may be referred to Neutral Evaluation on consent of the parties at any time during the litigation, including at the preliminary conference. The Neutral Evaluation Program (the “NEP” or the “Program”) offers parties access, free of charge, to qualified Neutral Evaluators. The goal of the NEP is to assist the parties and their counsel in reaching a resolution or to decide a discrete issue or issues. Although parties are not obligated to settle in Neutral Evaluation, parties often resolve the discrete issue or issues referred to the Neutral. If a settlement is not reached during the sessions, parties may proceed in Court. Referral to the Program will not stay the court proceedings.

Rules Roster Forms
Notice of Neutral Evaluation Program
Statement of Procedures for Neutral Evaluation Program
Roster of Neutrals Order of Reference

NEW YORK COUNTY MATRIMONIAL MEDIATION PROGRAM

The New York County Matrimonial Mediation Program links divorcing couples to trained mediators to help them reach agreements on parenting and economic matters. Parties receive the first 90 minutes of meditation free.

Rules Roster Forms
Matrimonial Mediation Rules    

To join the Matrimonial Mediation Roster, please complete this application to be considered:

APPLICATION FOR COURT ROSTER MEDIATORS

MATRIMONIAL NEUTRAL EVALUATION PROGRAM

The Matrimonial Neutral Evaluation Program (the "MNEP" or the "Program") offers parties access free of charge to qualified Neutral Evaluators who meet the criteria set out in Section VI. The goal of the MNEP is to assist the parties and their counsel in reaching a resolution on a discrete issue or issues. Although parties are not obligated to settle in Neutral Evaluation, parties often resolve the discrete issue or issues referred to the Neutral.

Rules Roster Forms
Statement of Procedures Roster of Neutrals Order of Reference

EARLY SETTLEMENT CONFERENCES

For certain trial-ready, post-Note-of-Issue civil cases, court staff meets with parties and counsel to help them settle. The court staff person, who is neutral, may evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of claims and offer an opinion about likely court outcomes. The court staff person may be an experienced attorney or judge designated for this purpose. The process often helps parties reach a settlement.

POST MEDIATION SURVEYS & REPORTS

MEDIATORS

To assist with onboarding qualified neutrals to serve as mediators for court cases, there is now a Statewide Mediator Application – a single application that mediators can use to apply to join any of the mediation rosters in the trial courts across the state.

NYS Courts Online Mediator Directory

FAQ

How are mediators selected?
Mediators are randomly selected by the ADR Office from a list of panel mediators who have the subject matter and/or mediation expertise that is relevant to a particular case.

Can I pick my own mediator?
Counsel may also agree to a particular mediator whether or not he/she is on the panel or to use the services of an independent Alternative Dispute Resolution organization. Compensation of mediators not on the Panel is determined by agreement among Counsel and the mediator.

Mediation FAQs

You may seek the services of a Community Dispute Resolution Center (CDRC), which offers free and low-cost mediation. There is a CDRC for every county in New York State. They can mediate court cases, as well as disputes that are not in court. Many CDRCs offer virtual mediation. More information and a link to your local CDRC can be found here:
http://ww2.nycourts.gov/ip/adr/ProgramList.shtml.

If you have a matter that is currently pending in New York County Supreme Court that you would like considered for reference to ADR, or if you have a question concerning ADR in New York County Supreme Court, please contact Jean Norton, ADR Coordinator for New York County Supreme Court, at jnorton@nycourts.gov.

LINKS:

NYS Courts Alternative Dispute Resolution—General Information
NYS Courts Online Mediator Directory

Diversity Statement

The New York State Unified Court System (NYS UCS) serves a wide variety of litigants, including persons of varying age, race, ethnicity, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, physical or mental ability, religion, socioeconomic and family status. The Court recognizes that neutrals with a wide variety of cultural and life experiences enrich the alternative dispute resolution (ADR) process by bringing diverse perspectives to resolving disputes. To accomplish these goals, it is important that the NYS UCS’s ADR Programs attract and retain neutrals who represent a broad range of personal and professional backgrounds to better serve and instill confidence in participants in the alternative dispute resolution process. To that end, qualified applicants of all backgrounds and experiences are encouraged to apply for admission to NYS UCS ADR Programs.