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Office of the Revisor of Statutes



Rule I.Self-Determination

A mediator shall recognize that mediation is based on the principle of self-determination by the parties. It requires that the mediation process rely upon the ability of the parties to reach a voluntary, uncoerced agreement. The primary responsibility for the resolution of a dispute and the shaping of a settlement agreement rests with the parties. A mediator shall not require a party to stay in the mediation against the party's will.

(Added effective August 27, 1997.)

Advisory Task Force Comment - 1997

1. The mediator may provide information about the process, raise issues, offer opinions about the strengths and weaknesses of a case, draft proposals, and help parties explore options. The primary role of the mediator is to facilitate a voluntary resolution of a dispute. Parties should be given the opportunity to consider all proposed options. It is acceptable for the mediator to suggest options in response to parties' requests, but not to coerce the parties to accept any particular option.

2. A mediator cannot personally ensure that each party has made a fully informed choice to reach a particular agreement, but it is a good practice for the mediator to make the parties aware of the importance of consulting other professionals, where appropriate, to help them make informed decisions.