For the Mediators

businessman shaking hands to seal a deal with his partner
Mediators will have the opportunity to serve on one of two panels based upon education, expertise, and experience. Mediators will have opportunity to join pay-select panel and those with less experience can apply for pro bono panel.

VBMC Requirements to qualify for pay select panel

  • Education: Undergraduate bachelor’s degree from a regionally or nationally accredited university.
  • Mediator Training and Education: A minimum of 60 hours from providers recognized by VBMC; CE or CLE focused on mediation specific topics will be accepted. Training must include at least 30 hours of basic mediator training that meets all DRPA requirements, and at least 10 hours in role play or mediation simulation experience. Non-attorneys must demonstrate that they have had an additional 3 hours in training on litigation and court terminology, which may be from the same training or educational provider that provided all or part of the required 60 hours.
  • Mediation Experience: Panelists must be able to substantiate that they have mediated a minimum of 100 cases. Applicants with a juris doctor degree from a law school or American Bar Association accredited law school or a graduate level degree in conflict resolution from a nationally or regionally accredited university may satisfy this requirement with 50 cases.
  • Ethical Requirements: Panelists will certify that they have read, and will abide by, the ethical standards used in court mediation programs as stated in the California Rules of Court, Chapter 3, Articles 1 and Article 2.
  • You agree to volunteer to provide educational programs from time to time to either schools, business organizations,  community organizations and other venues where information about mediation is needed,
  • You agree to offer an initial service of 2 to 3 hours at a reduced rate of $150 per hour, and thereafter charge your normal hourly rate.

How to quality for Pro Bono Panel

  • Education: Undergraduate bachelor’s degree in any discipline from a regionally or nationally accredited college or university, or a first professional degree in law with active State Bar membership.
  • Mediator Training and Education: A minimum of 60 hours from providers recognized by the Valley Bar ADR Center; CE or CLE focused on mediation specific topics will be accepted. Training must include at least 30 hours of basic mediator training that meets all Dispute Resolution Programs Act (DRPA) requirements, and at least 10 hours in role play or mediation simulation experience. Non-attorneys must demonstrate that they have had an additional 3 hours in training on litigation and court terminology, which may be from the same training(s) or educational provider(s) that provided all or part of the required 60 hours.
  • Ethical Requirements: Panelists will certify that they have read, and will abide by, the ethical standards used in court mediation programs as stated in the California Rules of Court, Chapter 3, Articles 1 and Article 2.

Note: As VBMC offers affordable mediation to parties across Southern California, we are not  currently selecting mediators who contract with major agencies such as ADR Services, JAMS, Judicate West, PMA, ARC, and others.

Application Form

Submit application form, proof of insurance, Jpeg photo, 200 word or less bio, and extended biography to VBMC at deanna.armbruster@gmail.com


Application Form: Mediator Application

Standards of Ethics

The VBMC Code of Ethics is adapted from the California Rules of Court, Rule 3.850 through
and including, Rule 3.859.
VBMC Code of Ethics:
Download File

California Rules of Court – Mediation:
Download File

Duties and responsibilities of mediator

  • The mediator guides parties through the mediation process.
  • The mediator explains the required forms used for the purpose of the mediation and secures.
  • The mediator coordinates with the parties for scheduling. Mediators and the parties will determine the location and date & time of the mediation.
  • The mediator explains the compensation structure and requires parties to commit to payment.
  • If they choose, the mediator can have a preliminary meeting with the counsels on both sides.
  • The mediator explains to the parties and/or their counsels how to file the appropriate documents with the court.
  • Following the mediation, the mediator can offer suggestions for continuation or finalization.
  • It is the responsibility of the mediator to stop mediation, if the circumstances ask for it.
  • Mediators ask the parties to fill in the evaluation form.

Forms and Instructions

The following forms will be needed for your mediation:

  • Agreement to Mediate including Waiver & Release and Confidentiality – Download and review prior to mediation.
    Download File
  • Settlement Agreement – After parties have reached an agreement on all or some issues, the Settlement Agreement will reflect of the areas of consensus.  This document will be filed with the court in a timely fashion.
  • Evaluation Form – At the conclusion of the mediation, parties will evaluate the mediator and the mediation process by using this form.  This form will be filled in at the end of the mediation.Download Form

Briefs 

It is customary for the parties to submit their briefs to help mediators learning about the case. The optimal time for submission is 7 business days prior to mediation.  The briefs should not exceed 10 pages and any additional documents and evidence should be sent by mail, attached to email, or faxed to mediator. The briefs will be deemed as confidential, unless parties agree otherwise.

Briefs should include:

  • the summary of parties and their counsels
  • the summary of pertinent facts
  • short litigation history
  • causes of action
  • statutes and the applicable law
  • parties’ positions and the assessment of damages
  • settlement posture and a short negotiation history

Requirements

Mediators are required to carry liability insurance.

Performance Enhancement in conjunction with Evaluation Forms

To enhance the quality of performance by each mediator on the panel, evaluations will serve as a quality control tool. Therefore, it will be required by parties and/or their counsels to complete this form. This will measure the level and quality of execution during the mediation..