Fa Shi  No.14
The Provisions of the Supreme People's Court on Mediation Invited by People's Courts, adopted at the 1684th session of the Judicial Committee of the Supreme People's Court on May 23, 2016, is hereby promulgated and shall come into effect as of July 1, 2016.
June 28, 2016
Provisions of the Supreme People's Court on Mediation Invited by People's Courts
(Adopted at the 1684th session of the Judicial Committee of the Supreme People's Court on May 23, 2016; Effective as of July 1, 2016)
For the purpose of improving the diversified dispute settlement mechanism, enhancing the effective connection between the solutions for litigation and non-litigation disputes, regulating the invited mediation work of people's courts, and maintaining the lawful rights and interests of the parties concerned, these Provisions are formulated in accordance with the Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China, the Law of the People's Republic of China on Civil Mediation and other laws and relevant judicial interpretations, as well as the practice of the people's courts.
Article 1 "Invited mediation" shall refer to mediation activities of people's courts in promoting the parties concerned to reach mediation agreements and resolve disputes through consultation on the basis of equality by absorbing eligible mediation organizations and individuals of civil mediation, administrative mediation, commercial mediation, and industry mediation to be invited mediation organizations or invited mediators to conduct mediation under people's courts' appointment before filing a case or entrustment after filing a case.
Article 2 Invited mediation shall be consistent with the following principles,
1. The parties concerned shall be voluntary and equal;
2. The litigation rights of the parties concerned shall be respected;
3. The prohibitive provisions of laws and regulations shall not be violated;
4. The national interests, social and public interests, and legitimate rights and interests of others shall not be damaged; and
5. The course of mediation and contents of the mediation agreement shall remain private, unless otherwise stipulated by law.
Article 3 The people's courts shall bear the following responsibilities in the invited mediation work,
1. For any dispute appropriate to be resolved by mediation, guide the parties concerned to select a mediation organization or a mediator from the roll for preliminary mediation;
2. Guide the invited mediation organizations and invited mediators to carry out the relevant work;
3. Supervise the procedures of invited mediation cases and collect relevant data;
4. Provide relevant services such as essential sites and office facilities;
5. Organize the invited mediators to undergo professional training;
6. Organize and carry out the performance assessment of invited mediation; and
7. Undertake other work concerned with invited mediation.
Article 4 The people's courts shall appoint departments such as a litigation service center to bear specific responsibilities for guiding the invited mediation and provide functionaries familiar to the mediation business.
The people's courts shall carry out invited mediation work as required.
Article 5 The people's courts shall establish a roll of invited mediation organizations and invited mediators to carry out invited mediation work. The court which has established a roll shall issue certificates to the invited mediation organizations and invited mediators registered in such roll and manage the roll. The roll established by a higher court may be used by a lower court.
Article 6 Organizations of civil mediation, administrative mediation, commercial mediation, industry mediation, and other organizations with mediation functions established according to the law may apply to be listed on the roll of invited mediation organizations. Any individual that is enthusiastic in mediation with good behaviors, fairness, honesty, and certain communication and coordination capabilities may apply to be listed on the roll of invited mediators.
The people's courts may invite eligible mediation organizations to be listed on the roll of invited mediation organizations and such qualified individuals to be listed on the roll of invited mediators, such as the NPC representatives, CPPCC members, people's assessors, experts and scholars, lawyers, arbitrators, retired legal professionals, etc.
Invited mediation organizations shall recommend their mediators suitable for invited mediation work to be clearly listed on the roll; mediators clearly listed on the roll shall be deemed the invited mediators by the people's courts.
Article 7 Invited mediators shall receive the professional training organized by the people's courts before being listed on the roll and during the tenure.
Article 8 The people's courts shall provide the rolls of invited mediation organizations and invited mediators in such places as the litigation service centers, and also disclose information of the rolls on platforms such as the court's bulletin board and official websites for the parties' convenience to make enquiries of.
Article 9 The people's courts may establish specialized mediation committees for family affairs, traffic accidents, medical disputes, etc., and set the conditions for being listed on the roll in accordance with the characteristics of such disputes in different professional fields to regulate the procedures for invited mediation in specialized fields.
Article 10 The people's courts shall establish performance archives for invited mediation organizations and invited mediators, evaluate invited mediation work regularly, and upgrade the rolls on time.
Article 11 For disputes suitable for mediation, the people's courts may appoint invited mediation organizations or invited mediators upon the parties' permission to conduct mediation before filing the case; after filing a case or in the course of a trial, the courts may entrust invited mediation organizations or invited mediators to conduct mediation.
The parties' request for mediation shall be made to the people's courts orally or in writing; where the request is made orally, the people's courts shall make a written record of such oral request.
Article 12 Both parties shall select a mediator from the roll through negotiation; when the negotiation fails, a mediator shall be appointed by the invited mediation organizations or the people's courts. The parties' disagreement with such appointment shall be deemed as the refusal of mediation.
Article 13 The invited mediation is generally conducted by one mediator alone. With respect to a serious, difficult, or complicated case, or a case requested by the parties to be jointly mediated by two or more mediators, such case may be mediated by two or more mediators, and the invited mediation organizations and the people's courts shall appoint a mediator to preside over the mediation. The parties with justified reasons may request the replacement of an invited mediator.
Article 14 The mediation shall generally take place where the people's court or the mediation organization is located; both parties concerned may also choose other places to conduct the mediation upon the permission of the people's courts.
Invited mediation organizations or invited mediators, after being appointed or entrusted, shall timely inform both parties of the time, location, and other matters concerning mediation; interested parties not involved in the case may also be informed to join the mediation.
Before the mediation procedures begin, the invited mediator shall inform both parties of their rights and obligations, the rules of mediation, the procedures of mediation, the effectiveness of mediation agreements, the application of judicial confirmation, and other matters.
Article 15 The parties shall be entitled to request an invited mediator to withdraw if such invited mediator is subject to any of the following circumstances:
1. He is a near relative of either party or of such party's agent ad litem in the case;
2. He is an interested party in the dispute; or
3. He has a certain relationship with either party or such party's agent ad litem in the case, which might affect the impartiality of the mediation.
An invited mediator shall withdraw from the case of his own accord, unless both parties otherwise agree with the mediation conducted by such mediator.
The withdrawal of an invited mediator shall be decided by the invited mediation organizations or the people's courts.
Article 16 An invited mediator shall not hold such positions as the people's assessor, agent ad litem, witness, expert witness, or interpreter in subsequent judicial proceedings of the case.
Article 17 An invited mediator shall adopt appropriate methods for mediation as the case may require, and may propose any scheme or suggestion for resolving the dispute. Invited mediators may invite personnel who can help reach a mediation agreement to participate in the mediation in order to bring about a mediation agreement between the parties concerned.
Article 18 An invited mediator shall suspend mediation if he finds any possible fraudulent mediation between both parties and report it to the people's court or the invited mediation organization.
The people's court or the invited mediation organization shall examine such report upon its receipt and deal with such report according to the relevant provisions.
Article 19 Where a mediation agreement is reached through appointed mediation, the invited mediator shall deliver such agreement to both parties and submit the same to the people's court for the record.
For a mediation agreement reached through appointed mediation, the parties concerned may apply for judicial confirmation in accordance with relevant laws such as the Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China and the Law of the People's Republic of China on Civil Mediation. The judicial confirmation applied by the parties concerned shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court at the place where the mediation organization is located or the basic people's court which appointed the mediation organization.
Article 20 The mediation agreement reached through entrusted mediation shall be submitted to the people's court by the invited mediator; and the people's court shall be responsible for making examination and drawing up a mediation statement to conclude the case. Where any party concerned applies to withdraw the case after the mediation agreement has been reached, the people's court shall issue a verdict according to the law.
Article 21 Where the appointed mediation fails to reach a mediation agreement, the invited mediator shall transfer the parties' materials such as the statement of complaint to the people's court; if the parties concerned insist on a lawsuit, the people's court shall file the case according to the law.
Where the entrusted mediation fails to reach a mediation agreement, the case shall be proceeded with under the judicial procedures for trial.
Article 22 In the course of mediation, facts accepted by the parties by compromise for the purpose of reaching a mediation agreement shall not be regarded as a basis adverse thereto in subsequent lawsuits, unless otherwise agreed by both parties.
Article 23 Where a mediation agreement is reached under the mediation conducted by the invited mediation organization or the invited mediator, a written mediation agreement may be prepared. If the parties concerned believe it unnecessary to prepare a written mediation agreement, an oral agreement may be adopted and the specific contents thereof shall be recorded by the invited mediator.
Article 24 A written mediation agreement shall state the following particulars:
1. Basic information of the parties concerned;
2. Major facts of dispute and disputed matters; and
3. The mediation results.
The written mediation agreement shall be signed or affixed with the seal or fingerprint of both parties and the invited mediator; if the mediation agreement is reached under the mediation presided and organized by the invited mediation organization, such mediation agreement shall also be affixed with the seal of the mediation organization.
The mediation agreement reached through appointed mediation shall take effect on the day when it is signed or affixed with the seal or fingerprint of both parties. The mediation agreement reached through entrusted mediation shall take effect on the date according to the provisions of relevant laws.
Article 25 After reaching a mediation agreement through appointed mediation, if any dispute occurs regarding the performance or the contents of the mediation agreement, the parties concerned may institute a lawsuit at the people's court, and the court shall entertain the case. Where one party brings a lawsuit to the people's court according to the original dispute while the other party raises a plea against the mediation agreement, the written mediation agreement shall be provided.
After the effectiveness of the mediation agreement is confirmed, if one party refuses to perform or fails to perform the agreement in whole, the other party may apply to the people's court for enforcement.
Article 26 Any invited mediator shall terminate the mediation in case of any of the following circumstances:
1. The parties concerned reach a mediation agreement;
2. One party withdraws the request for mediation or explicitly refuses the mediation;
3. The invited mediator holds the belief that both parties have so many differences that it is difficult to reach a mediation agreement; and
4. Other circumstances hindering the mediation.
The invited mediator shall submit a written report and refer relevant materials to the people's court that has appointed or entrusted him or her if the mediation is terminated.
Article 27 A case appointed by the people's court shall be mediated within the time limit of 30 days. However, the time limit does not apply if both parties concerned agree to extend the time period for the mediation.
A case entrusted by the people's court shall be mediated within the time limit of 15 days through ordinary procedures and be mediated within 7 days through simplified procedures. However, the time limit does not apply if both parties concerned agree to extend the time period for the mediation. The extended time limit for mediation shall not be included in the time limit for case hearing.
The time limit for appointed mediation or entrusted mediation shall be calculated from the date when the invited mediation organization or invited mediator affixes the received signature on the materials referred by the people's court.
Article 28 Any invited mediator shall not be found to commit any of the following conduct:
1. Making mediation in a forceful way;
2. Making mediation in an illegal way;
3. Accepting requests or properties offered by any party concerned;
4. Divulging any information on the mediation process or the contents in the mediation agreement; and
5. Other conduct that violates the professional ethics of mediators.
The parties concerned may complain to the people's court if any aforementioned circumstance is found. If the circumstance is confirmed by investigation, the people's court shall order the mediator to make corrections and deal with the issue by warning, circulating a notice of criticism, and removing the mediator from the roll.
Article 29 Subsidy for loss of working time or transportation shall be given by the people's court to invited mediators engaging in mediation work according to the actual situations; outstanding invited mediation organizations and invited mediators shall be given material or honorary rewards. Subsidy expenditure shall be included in the special budget of the people's court.
The people's court may apply for a special budget for invited mediations from departments concerned according to the relevant provisions.
Article 30 These Provisions shall come into effect as of July 1, 2016.
*The original text is Chinese and has been translated into English for reference only. If there is any inconsistency or ambiguity between the Chinese version and the English version, the Chinese version shall prevail.