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Mediators Take Note: Are We A Cottage Industry? Are We A Profession? Who Will Decide?

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Chapter Summary

Since 1976, mediation has grown exponentially in the United States. Many transactional lawyers write mediation-before-arbitration, or mediation before- litigation clauses into business agreements. Mediation panels have sprung up-the American Arbitration Association (AAA) hosts a panel of mediators, as does CPR, as does Judicial Arbitration and Mediation Services (JAMS), as does the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), as do innumerable federal and state courts. As a profession, mediators of commercial disputes operate under no universal set of rules, require no training or testing, and are not licensed to practice as mediators by any professional or government body. The core remit of the International Mediation Institute (IMI) is to establish a set of globally applicable, transparent standards for mediators that will raise professional practice standards and enable those who use the services of a mediator to establish the professional competence of that mediator with a high degree of confidence.

Keywords: American Arbitration Association (AAA); arbitration; commercial disputes; Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA); International Mediation Institute (IMI); Judicial Arbitration and Mediation Services (JAMS); litigation; mediation; mediators; professional practice



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