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2024 California Rules of Court

Rule 3.859. Compensation and gifts

(a) Compliance with law

A mediator must comply with any applicable requirements concerning compensation established by statute or the court.

(b) Disclosure of and compliance with compensation terms

Before commencing the mediation, the mediator must disclose to the parties in writing any fees, costs, or charges to be paid to the mediator by the parties. A mediator must abide by any agreement that is reached concerning compensation.

(c) Contingent fees

The amount or nature of a mediator's fee must not be made contingent on the outcome of the mediation.

(Subd (c) amended effective January 1, 2007.)

(d) Gifts and favors

A mediator must not at any time solicit or accept from or give to any participant or affiliate of a participant any gift, bequest, or favor that might reasonably raise a question concerning the mediator's impartiality.

Rule 3.859 amended and renumbered effective January 1, 2007; adopted as rule 1620.9 effective January 1, 2003.

Advisory Committee Comment

Subdivision (b). It is good practice to put mediation fee agreements in writing, and mediators are strongly encouraged to do so; however, nothing in this rule is intended to preclude enforcement of a compensation agreement for mediation services that is not in writing.

Subdivision (d). Whether a gift, bequest, or favor "might reasonably raise a question concerning the mediator's impartiality" must be determined on a case-by-case basis. This subdivision is not intended to prohibit a mediator from accepting other employment from any of the participants, consistent with rule 3.858(d).

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