Did you know that most of all civil cases filed in court are resolved without going to trial? Many people use processes other than trial to resolve their disputes. These alternative processes, known as Alternative Dispute Resolution or ADR, are typically less formal and adversarial than trial, and many use a problem-solving approach to help the parties reach agreement. Because of these potential advantages, it is worth considering using ADR early in a lawsuit, or even before you file a lawsuit.
Note: ADR only pertains to Unlimited Civil cases.
The first step in the ADR process is to engage in public hearings between the parties and the Court, usually taken in an office setting, designed to monitor the status of a case in order to ensure adequate progress is being made by all parties. This step is called Case Management Conference.
For more information regarding ADR, please read the following guides:
The Superior Court of California County of Merced provides the following useful information and forms to assist you in making a decision regarding participation in ADR:
- ADR Stipulation
- EMP Statement of Settlement Status Form
- Early Mediation Opt-Out Form
- ADR Neutral Panel Application
- ADR Neutral Survey
The Superior Court of California, County of Merced offers a Judicial Arbitration Program and now, an Early Mediation Program, for its Civil Unlimited cases.
These Programs depend largely on community members serving as arbitrators and mediators on the court’s ADR Neutral Panel. The Court greatly appreciates the services of these individuals, and actively recruits new members to the Panel. If you or someone you know is interested in becoming a member of the court’s Panel, please fill out an application and submit it to the court’s ADR office. If selected to the panel, the information provided on the application will be made available to the public on the court's website.
Below is a list of ADR neutrals available for Merced Superior Court's ADR Programs:
Please feel free to call the following resources if you need more information about ADR:
Superior Court of California, County of Merced ADR Office
Tel: (209) 725-4249
California Department of Consumer Affairs, Consumer Information Center
Tel: (800) 952-5210
Merced County Bar Association
Tel: (209) 722-8129