ARC's Hearing Formats

Mediation offers disputants an opportunity to explore a wide range of creative solutions and often results in a win-win outcome for parties on all sides.

Mediation is an informal, voluntary process in which two or more disputing parties attempt to negotiate a settlement under the guidance of a neutral third party. The key component of mediation is the fact that the parties themselves determine whether an agreement is reached and, if so, what the terms of that agreement may be. The mediator does not have the authority to impose a settlement and the mediation process may be terminated at any time without cause by any party.

ARC's experienced neutrals are trained mediators who have specific subject matter expertise and use a range of techniques to assist parties in opening a dialogue and finding common ground. Parties may choose a facilitative mediation process, an evaluative mediation process, or a hybrid of both.

Arbitration is a formal dispute resolution process in which a neutral arbitrator imposes a final and binding decision. Arbitration is much more flexible than litigation, allowing for limited discovery and other time and cost-saving measures not available in a courtroom setting. Arbitrations at ARC are conducted under ARC’s Arbitration Rules, or other rules agreed to by all parties (See Section 1280.) Parties may choose customized arbitration formats. For example, in a “high-low” arbitration, the parties may agree in advance to a maximum and minimum award.

Arbitrators at ARC have years of experience on the bench and as litigators and can be counted to make sound legal decisions in accordance with the facts of the case.

A referee is a judicial officer appointed by the court and derives his authority solely form the order of appointment. A referee’s authority is restricted by the order of reference that may enlarge or limit his functions, powers and duties. A referee is empowered to make finding on the whole issue that must stand as the findings of the court and upon which the court renders the judgment.

CCP 639 provides that the court may, upon the application of either party, or on its own motion, direct a reference for the purpose of:

  • a. Performing an accounting. (§639(a), (b))
  • b. Hearing and determining discovery motions or disputes. (§639(e))

Under California Code of Civil Procedure §638, a retired judge or attorney from ARC may be appointed upon the agreement of the parties to act as a private judge or referee to hear and determine any or all of the issues in an action or proceeding, and to report a statement of the decision to the court. ARC’s panelists are frequently referred cases in this manner and offer the parties an efficient means of resolving part or all of their dispute outside the courtroom.

Constitution: California Constitution Article VI, Section 21

Rules: California Rules of Court, Rule 244

Upon stipulation of the parties the Temporary Judge has all of the powers of a sitting judge to hear and determine all pretrial motions and discovery matters, preside over the trial and render judgment, and hear and determine all post-trial motions. The Judge Pro tem must be a member of the State bar and must take an oath of office. Within the cause in which he who is appointed, a judge pro tem may punish for contempt.

A settlement conference is a derivative of the State Courts Mandatory Settlement Conference (MSC) in which a hearing officer evaluates the merit of your case and evaluates damages and liability. A voluntary settlement conference is the least expensive way to resolve a case where both sides see the advantages of compromise. As much time as necessary can be devoted to the process, which is particular importance in cases involving multiple issues and or parties.

ARC SETTLEMENT DAYS offer insurance carriers and defense attorneys an opportunity to meet with plaintiff attorneys to settle multiple files. ARC will bring the retired judge of your choice, along with a case administrator, to your location at a special day rate. We'll also handle all coordination setup, and scheduling. Settlement Day participants typically settle 90% of the cases they submit.

ARC offers the services of experienced retired appellate justices for a wide variety of appeal-related matters. These retired justices are available to consult on trial, post-trial and appellate strategy, including the review of trial court records to evaluate the likelihood of success on appeal. Once an appeal is underway, they can review and comment on appellate briefs. And, as the matter progresses, they can participate in mock oral arguments and otherwise assist in the preparation for oral arguments. In addition, they are always available to work towards the settlement of appellate matters.

An Arbitration Tribunal is a panel of 1 or more adjudicators, which is convened and sits to resolve a dispute by way of arbitration. The parties to dispute are usually free to agree to the number and composition of the arbitral tribunal. The Panel at ARC is an example of the advantages of using a tribunal for complex entertainment and business litigation cases.

  • Is ideal for small insurance matters, real estate disputes and other cases valued at $50,000.00 and under. * It's a great opportunity to settle cases while reducing expenses without sacrificing quality.
  • Is only $180 PER HOUR split evenly between the parties with a minimum of three hours and a $200 non-refundable administrative fee per party. If the hearing continutes beyond three hours, you will be billed at the regular rate of the hearing officer.
  • Has a much greater rate of success than any of the free mediation programs throughout the state. Our program offers an approximately 90% SETTLEMENT RATE.
  • Offers a wide range of neutrals. Often when you call to set a case, we can offer you a few more neutrals in addition to those who are currently on the ARC Low Cost list.

*Excludes some types of disputes and practice areas; please call for details.

TRADITIONAL, ADVERSARIAL divorce proceedings can take more than a year and cost tens of thousands of dollars, imposing staggering financial and emotional burdens on an already-fragmented family.
THE COOPERATIVE DIVORCE CENTER AT ARC focuses on reducing the hostility and finding long-term solutions that benefit the entire family. We offer highly experienced retired judges and attorney-mediators who have handled thousands of Family Law cases, both in the courtroom and in private mediations. These mediators encourage active participation by both spouses and can resolve matters ranging from asset division and support to child custody and visitation.
Minimize the bitterness and chaos of divorce proceedings, and save time and money at our Cooperative Divorce Centers

Used most often in employment disputes, Neutral Fact-Finding is a voluntary and consensual process involving a mediator or other outside neutral third party investigator. This “fact-finder” conducts a due process search for evidence relating to an existing conflict. The fact-finder typically interviews the claimant, the defendant and other witnesses and prepares a confidential report for management and in some cases, their counsel. Neutral fact-finders are often more likely to uncover facts than are stakeholders and their discoveries often provide employers with the information they need to resolve a dispute internally without litigation.

Early Neutral Evaluation is a form of dispute resolution in which a qualified neutral evaluates your case in the early stages of litigation. The discussion focuses on evidence issues, liability, damages, etc. relative to the case and affecting the outcome.

Alternative Resolution Centers

If you or your business is facing a legal challenge that calls for sound advice and skilled representation, contact us today to arrange a free consultation.

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