Mediation Helps New York Work Through Its Pandemic Backlog
Chief Judge Janet DiFiore of the New York Court of Appeals and of the State of New York identified ADR, and specifically mediation, as an important tool in reducing COVID-19 pandemic backups in the state court system (https://www.nycourts.gov/whatsnew/pdf/Apr25-CJ-Message2022.pdf). According to Chief Judge DiFiore, “tens of thousands of cases were referred to virtual and in-person mediation in 2020 and 2021 with an overall settlement rate of over 50%."
Chief Judge DiFiore noted that “[t]here is no question in our minds that ADR will play a very significant role in our ability to efficiently process our dockets and reduce our pandemic-related backlogs," and she emphasized that the state court system is "following through on our commitment to presumptive early ADR and making a concerted push to expand ADR services in our civil and family courts all across the state." She forecast that ADR and mediation will expand to become "a mainstay of the civil justice process in our state.”