Dec 31, 1983
This Note reports the findings of a national survey to determine the current status of court-annexed arbitration among state and federal trial courts, and is an update of a similar survey conducted by The Institute for Civil Justice in 1980, and published as R-2732-ICJ. Since then, the number of jurisdictions around the country that authorize court-annexed arbitration has doubled. Currently sixteen states have authorized arbitration programs and all but two of those have active programs under way in one or more major courts. On the federal side, eight additional districts are implementing court-annexed arbitration programs, bringing the total to ten. There is considerable variation among the programs: the upper limit on the value of cases eligible for the program varies from $3,000 in Alaska to $150,000 in a number of the federal district courts. Other features, such as the disincentive to appeal arbitrator awards, the number of arbitrators and their rate of compensation also vary among jurisdictions. Eight more states are considering court-annexed arbitration programs, and 26 states reported that current demand on judicial resources did not warrant such a program. Appendixes provide copies of authorizing legislation and examples of state and local court rules.