Alternative Dispute Resolution Law | Mediation | Alternative Dispute Resolution

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Alternative Dispute Resolution
  Republic Act No. 9285 April 2, 2004 AN ACT TO INSTITUTIONALIZE TE USE O! AN ALTERNATI E #IS$UTE RESOLUTION S%STE& IN TE $ILI$$INES AN# TO ESTA'LIS TE O!!ICE !OR ALTERNATI E #IS$UTE RESOLUTION, AN# !OR OTER $UR$OSES CA$TER ( ) *ENERAL $RO ISIONSSECTION (.   Title .  - This act shall be known as the Alternative Dispute Resolution Act of 2004. SEC. 2.    Declaration of Policy .  - it is hereby declared the policy of the tate to actively pro!ote party autono!y in the resolution of disputes or the freedo! of the party to !ake their own arrane!ents to resolve their disputes. Towards this end# the tate shall encourae and actively pro!ote the use of Alternative Dispute Resolution $ADR% as an i!portant !eans to achieve speedy and i!partial &ustice and declo court dockets. As such# the tate shall provide !eans for the use of ADR as an efficient tool and an alternative procedure for the resolution of appropriate cases. 'ikewise# the tate shall enlist active private sector participation in the settle!ent of disputes throuh ADR. This Act shall be without pre&udice to the adoption by the upre!e (ourt of any ADR syste!# such as !ediation# conciliation# arbitration# or any co!bination thereof as a !eans of achievin speedy and efficient !eans of resolvin cases pendin before all courts in the )hilippines which shall be overned by such rules as the upre!e (ourt !ay approve fro! ti!e to ti!e. SEC. +.    Definition of Terms .  - *or purposes of this Act# the ter!+$a% Alternative Dispute Resolution yste! !eans any process or procedure used to resolve a dispute or controversy# other than by ad&udication of a presidin &ude of a court or an officer of a overn!ent aency# as defined in this Act# in which a neutral third party  participates to assist in the resolution of issues# which includes arbitration# !ediation# conciliation# early neutral evaluation# !ini-trial# or any co!bination thereof,$b% ADR )rovider !eans institutions or persons accredited as !ediator# conciliator# arbitrator# neutral evaluator# or any person eercisin si!ilar functions in any Alternative Dispute Resolution syste!. This is without pre&udice to the rihts of the parties to choose nonaccredited individuals to act as !ediator# conciliator# arbitrator# or neutral evaluator of their dispute.henever reffered to in this Act# the ter! ADR practitioners shall refer to individuals actin as !ediator# conciliator# arbitrator or neutral evaluator,$c% Authenticate !eans to sin# eecute or adopt a sy!bol# or encrypt a record in whole or in part# intended to identity the authenticatin  party and to adopt# accept or establish the authenticity of a record or ter!,$d% Arbitration !eans a voluntary dispute resolution process in which one or !ore arbitrators# appointed in accordance with the aree!ent of the parties# or rules pro!ulated pursuant to this Act# resolve a dispute by renderin an award,$e% Arbitrator !eans the person appointed to render an award# alone or with others# in a dispute that is the sub&ect of an arbitration aree!ent,$f% Award !eans any partial or final decision by an arbitrator in resolvin the issue in a controversy,$% (o!!ercial Arbitration An arbitration is co!!ercial if it covers !atter arisin fro! all relationships of a co!!ercial nature# whether contractual or not,$h% (onfidential infor!ation !eans any infor!ation# relative to the sub&ect of !ediation or arbitration# epressly intended by the source not to be disclosed# or obtained under circu!stances that would create a reasonable epectation on behalf of the source that the infor!ation shall not be disclosed. /t shall include $% co!!unication# oral or written# !ade in a dispute resolution proceedins# includin any !e!oranda# notes or work product of the neutral party or non-party participant# as defined in this Act, $2% an oral or written state!ent !ade or which occurs durin !ediation or for purposes of considerin# conductin# participatin# initiatin# continuin of reconvenin !ediation or retainin a !ediator, and $1% pleadins# !otions !anifestations# witness state!ents# reports filed or sub!itted in an arbitration or for epert evaluation,$i% (onvention Award !eans a forein arbitral award !ade in a (onvention tate,$&% (onvention tate !eans a tate that is a !e!ber of the ew 3ork (onvention,$k% (ourt as referred to in Article  of the 5odel 'aw shall !ean a Reional Trial (ourt,$l% (ourt-Anneed 5ediation !eans any !ediation process conducted under the auspices of the court# after such court has ac6uired  &urisdiction of the dispute,  $!% (ourt-Referred 5ediation !eans !ediation ordered by a court to be conducted in accordance with the Aree!ent of the )arties when as action is pre!aturely co!!enced in violation of such aree!ent,$n% 7arly eutral 7valuation !eans an ADR process wherein parties and their lawyers are brouht toether early in a pre-trial phase to  present su!!aries of their cases and receive a nonbindin assess!ent by an eperienced# neutral person# with epertise in the sub&ect in the substance of the dispute,$o% 8overn!ent Aency !eans any overn!ent entity# office or officer# other than a court# that is vested by law with 6uasi-&udicial  power to resolve or ad&udicate dispute involvin the overn!ent# its aencies and instru!entalities# or private persons, $p% /nternational )arty shall !ean an entity whose place of business is outside the )hilippines. /t shall not include a do!estic subsidiary of such international party or a coventurer in a &oint venture with a party which has its place of business in the )hilippines.The ter! foreiner arbitrator shall !ean a person who is not a national of the )hilippines.$6% 5ediation !eans a voluntary process in which a !ediator# selected by the disputin parties# facilitates co!!unication and neotiation# and assist the parties in reachin a voluntary aree!ent reardin a dispute.$r% 5ediator !eans a person who conducts !ediation,$s% 5ediation )arty !eans a person who participates in a !ediation and whose consent is necessary to resolve the dispute,$t% 5ediation-Arbitration or 5ed-Arb is a step dispute resolution process involvin both !ediation and arbitration, $u% 5ini-Trial !eans a structured dispute resolution !ethod in which the !erits of a case are arued before a panel co!prisin senior decision !akers with or without the presence of a neutral third person after which the parties seek a neotiated settle!ent,$v% 5odel 'aw !eans the 5odel 'aw on /nternational (o!!ercial Arbitration adopted by the 9nited ations (o!!ission on /nternational Trade 'aw on 2 :une ;<=,$w% ew 3ork (onvention !eans the 9nited ations (onvention on the Reconition and 7nforce!ent of *orein Arbitral Awards approved in ;=< and ratified by the )hilippine enate under enate Resolution o. >,$% on-(onvention Award !eans a forein arbitral award !ade in a tate which is not a (onvention tate,$y% on-(onvention tate !eans a tate that is not a !e!ber of the ew 3ork (onvention.$?% on-)arty )articipant !eans a person# other than a party or !ediator# who participates in a !ediation proceedin as a witness# resource person or epert,$aa% )roceedin !eans a &udicial# ad!inistrative# or other ad&udicative process# includin related pre-hearin !otions# conferences and discovery,$bb% Record !eans an infor!ation written on a tanible !ediu! or stored in an electronic or other si!ilar !ediu!# retrievable for!, and$cc% Roster !eans a list of persons 6ualified to provide ADR services as neutrals or to serve as arbitrators. SEC. 4.    Electronic Signatures in Global and E-Commerce Act  .  - The provisions of the 7lectronic inatures in 8lobal and 7-(o!!erce Act# and its i!ple!entin Rules and Reulations shall apply to proceedin conte!plated in this Act. SEC. 5.    Liability of ADR Provider and Practitioner  .  - The ADR providers and practitioners shall have the sa!e civil liability for the Acts done in the perfor!ance of then duties as that of public officers as provided in ection 1< $%# (hapter ;# @ook of the Ad!inistrative (ode of ;<>. SEC. .    Excetion to t!e Alication of t!is Act  .  - The provisions of this Act shall not apply to resolution or settle!ent of the followin+ $a% labor disputes covered by )residential Decree o. 442# otherwise known as the 'abor (ode of the )hilippines# as a!ended and its /!ple!entin Rules and Reulations, $b% the civil status of persons, $c% the validity of a !arriae, $d% any round for leal separation, $e% the &urisdiction of courts, $f% future leiti!e, $% cri!inal liability, and $h% those which by law cannot be co!pro!ised.  CA$TER 2 ) &E#IATIONSEC. -.    Scoe .  - The provisions of this (hapter shall cover voluntary !ediation# whether ad hoc or institutional# other than court-anneed. The ter! !ediation shall include conciliation. SEC. 8.    Alication and nterretation .  - /n applyin construin the provisions of this (hapter# consideration !ust be iven to the need to pro!ote candor or parties and !ediators throuh confidentiality of the !ediation process# the policy of fosterin pro!pt# econo!ical# and a!icable resolution of disputes in accordance with the principles of interity of deter!ination by the parties# and the policy that the decision-!akin authority in the !ediation process rests with the parties. SEC. 9.   Confidentiality of nformation .  - /nfor!ation obtained throuh !ediation proceedins shall be sub&ect to the followin principles and uidelines+$a% /nfor!ation obtained throuh !ediation shall be privileed and confidential.$b% A party# a !ediator# or a nonparty participant !ay refuse to disclose and !ay prevent any other person fro! disclosin a !ediation co!!unication.$c% (onfidential /nfor!ation shall not be sub&ect to discovery and shall be inad!issible if any adversarial proceedin# whether &udicial or 6uasi-&udicial# Bowever# evidence or infor!ation that is otherwise ad!issible or sub&ect to discovery does not beco!e inad!issible or  protected fro! discovery solely by reason of its use in a !ediation.$d% /n such an adversarial proceedin# the followin persons involved or previously involved in a !ediation !ay not be co!pelled to disclose confidential infor!ation obtained durin !ediation+ $% the parties to the dispute, $2% the !ediator or !ediators, $1% the counsel for the parties, $4% the nonparty participants, $=% any persons hired or enaed in connection with the !ediation as secretary# stenorapher# clerk or assistant, and $% any other person who obtains or possesses confidential infor!ation by reason of hisCher profession.$e% The protections of this Act shall continue to apply even of a !ediator is found to have failed to act i!partially.$f% a !ediator !ay not be called to testify to provide infor!ation athered in !ediation. A !ediator who is wronfully subpoenaed shall be rei!bursed the full cost of his attorneys fees and related epenses. SEC. (0.   #aiver of Confidentiality .  - A privilee arisin fro! the confidentiality of infor!ation !ay be waived in a record# or orally durin a  proceedin by the !ediator and the !ediation parties.A privilee arisin fro! the confidentiality of infor!ation !ay likewise be waived by a nonparty participant if the infor!ation is provided by such nonparty participant.A person who discloses confidential infor!ation shall be precluded fro! assertin the privilee under ection ; of this (hapter to bar disclosure of the rest of the infor!ation necessary to a co!plete understandin of the previously disclosed infor!ation. /f a person suffers loss or da!aes in a  &udicial proceedin aainst the person who !ade the disclosure.A person who discloses or !akes a representation about a !ediation is preclude fro! assertin the privilee under ection ;# to the etent that the co!!unication pre&udices another person in the proceedin and it is necessary for the person pre&udiced to respond to the representation of disclosure. SEC. ((.    Excetions to Privilege .  - $a% There is no privilee aainst disclosure under ection ; if !ediation co!!unication is+$% in an aree!ent evidenced by a record authenticated by all parties to the aree!ent,$2% available to the public or that is !ade durin a session of a !ediation which is open# or is re6uired by law to be open# to the  public,$1% a threat or state!ent of a plan to inflict bodily in&ury or co!!it a cri!e of violence,$4% internationally used to plan a cri!e# atte!pt to co!!it# or co!!it a cri!e# or conceal an onoin cri!e or cri!inal activity,$=% souht or offered to prove or disprove abuse# nelect# abandon!ent# or eploitation in a proceedin in which a public aency is protectin the interest of an individual protected by law, but this eception does not apply where a child protection !atter is referred to !ediation by a court or a public aency participates in the child protection !ediation,  $% souht or offered to prove or disprove a clai! or co!plaint of professional !isconduct or !alpractice filed aainst !ediator in a proceedin, or $>% souht or offered to prove or disprove a clai! of co!plaint of professional !isconduct of !alpractice filed aainst a party# nonparty participant# or representative of a party based on conduct occurrin durin a !ediation.$b% There is no privilee under ection ; if a court or ad!inistrative aency# finds# after a hearin in ca!era# that the party seekin discovery of the proponent of the evidence has shown that the evidence is not otherwise available# that there is a need for the evidence that substantially outweihs the interest in protectin confidentiality# and the !ediation co!!unication is souht or offered in+$% a court proceedin involvin a cri!e or felony, or $2% a proceedin to prove a clai! or defense that under the law is sufficient to refor! or avoid a liability on a contract arisin out of the !ediation.$c% A !ediator !ay not be co!pelled to provide evidence of a !ediation co!!unication or testify in such proceedin.$d% /f a !ediation co!!unication is not privileed under an eception in subsection $a% or $b%# only the portion of the co!!unication necessary for the application of the eception for nondisclosure !ay be ad!itted. The ad!ission of particular evidence for the li!ited  purpose of an eception does not render that evidence# or any other !ediation co!!unication# ad!issible for any other purpose. SEC. (2.    Pro!ibited $ediator Reorts .  - A !ediator !ay not !ake a report# assess!ent# evaluation# reco!!endation# findin# or other co!!unication reardin a !ediation to a court or aency or other authority that !ake a rulin on a dispute that is the sub&ect of a !ediation# ecept+$a% here the !ediation occurred or has ter!inated# or where a settle!ent was reached.$b% As per!itted to be disclosed under ection 1 of this (hapter. SEC. (+.    $ediator%s Disclosure and Conflict of nterest  .  - The !ediation shall be uided by the followin operative principles+$a% @efore acceptin a !ediation# an individual who is re6uested to serve as a !ediator shall+$% !ake an in6uiry that is reasonable under the circu!stances to deter!inate whether there are any known facts that a reasonable individual would consider likely to affect the i!partiality of the !ediator# includin a financial or personal interest in the outco!e of the !ediation and any eistin or past relationship with a party or foreseeable participant in the !ediation, and $2% disclosure to the !ediation parties any such fact known or learned as soon as is practical before acceptin a !ediation.$b% /f a !ediation learns any fact described in pararaph $a% $% of this section after acceptin a !ediation# the !ediator shall disclose it as soon as practicable.At the re6uest of a !ediation party# an individual who is re6uested to serve as !ediator shall disclose hisCher 6ualifications to !ediate a dispute.This Act does not re6uire that a !ediator shall have special 6ualifications by backround or profession unless the special 6ualifications of a !ediator are re6uired in the !ediation aree!ent or by the !ediation parties. SEC. (4.    Particiation in $ediation .  - 7cept as otherwise provided in this Act# a party !ay desinate a lawyer or any other person to provide assistance in the !ediation. A lawyer of this riht shall be !ade in writin by the party waivin it. A waiver of participation or leal representation !ay be rescinded at any ti!e. SEC. (5.    Place of $ediation .  - The parties are free to aree on the place of !ediation. *ailin such aree!ent# the place of !ediation shall be any  place convenient and appropriate to all parties. SEC. (.    Effect of Agreement to Submit Disute to $ediation &nder nstitutional Rules .  - An aree!ent to sub!it a dispute to !ediation by any institution shall include an aree!ent to be bound by the internal !ediation and ad!inistrative policies of such institution. *urther# an aree!ent to sub!it a dispute to !ediation under international !ediation rule shall be dee!ed to include an aree!ent to have such rules overn the !ediation of the dispute and for the !ediator# the parties# their respective counsel# and nonparty participants to abide by such rules./n case of conflict between the institutional !ediation rules and the provisions of this Act# the latter shall prevail. SEC. (-.    Enforcement of $ediated Settlement Agreement  .  - The !ediation shall be uided by the followin operative principles+
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