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Voluntary Arbitration in Eight Federal District Courts: An Evaluation

NCJ Number
D Rauma; C Krafka
Date Published
29 pages
This is a supplement to Court-Annexed Arbitration in Ten District Courts, a 1990 statutorily mandated report by the Federal Judicial Center on mandatory court-annexed arbitration programs.
Section 1 explains the pilot arbitration programs, the Center's statutory mandate to provide Congress with information and a recommendation about the program's operation, and events since the 1990 report. Section 2 summarizes the results of the Center's evaluation of the mandatory arbitration program. Section 3 describes the main elements of the eight existing voluntary arbitration programs. Section 4 summarizes data on levels of participation in the voluntary arbitration programs and demands for trial de novo. Among the findings are: Three of the four opt-out voluntary arbitration programs (but none of the four opt-in programs) had participation rates comparable to those of the mandatory arbitration programs. Trial de novo demand rates in the two voluntary arbitration programs with the largest number of hearings were comparable to those of the mandatory arbitration programs. Section 5 suggests some reasons for the generally lower participation rates in the voluntary programs as compared with the mandatory programs. Footnotes, tables