Md. R. ADR 17-202

As amended through September 30, 2022
Rule 17-202 - General Procedure
(a)Scope. This Rule does not apply to health care malpractice actions under Code, Courts Article, Title 3, Subtitle 2A, which are governed by Rule 17-203.
(b)Participation Requirements.
(1)Non-fee-for-service Settlement Conference. The court may require the parties and their attorneys to participate in a non-fee-for-service settlement conference.

Committee note: If a settlement conference is required, it should be conducted subsequent to any other court-referred ADR.

(2)Other ADR. The court may refer all or part of an action to one ADR process in accordance with sections (c), (d), and (e) of this Rule, but the court may not require participation in that ADR if a timely objection is filed in accordance with section (f) of this Rule.
(c)Designation of ADR Practitioner.
(1)Direct Designation. In an order referring all or part of an action to ADR, the court may designate, from a list of approved ADR practitioners maintained by the court pursuant to Rule 17-207, an ADR practitioner to conduct the ADR.
(2)Indirect Designation if ADR is Non-fee-for-service. If the ADR is non-fee-for-service, the court may delegate authority to an ADR organization selected from a list maintained by the court pursuant to Rule 17-207 or to an ADR unit of the court to designate an ADR practitioner qualified under Rules 17-205 or 17-206, as applicable, to conduct the ADR. An individual designated by the ADR organization pursuant to the court order has the status of a court-designated ADR practitioner.

Committee note: Examples of the use of indirect designation are referrals of indigent litigants to publicly funded community mediation centers and referrals of one or more types of cases to a mediation unit of the court.

(d)Discretion in Designation. In designating an ADR practitioner, the court is not required to choose at random or in any particular order from among the qualified ADR practitioners or organizations on its lists. The court should endeavor to use the services of as many qualified persons as practicable, but the court may consider, in light of the issues and circumstances presented by the action or the parties, any special training, background, experience, expertise, or temperament of the available prospective designees.
(e)Contents of Order of Referral; Termination or Extension of ADR; Restriction on Fee Increase. An order of referral to ADR shall specify a maximum number of hours of required participation by the parties. An order to a fee-for-service ADR shall also specify the hourly rate that may be charged for ADR services in the action, which may not exceed the maximum stated in the applicable fee schedule. The parties may participate for less than the number of hours stated in the order if they and the ADR practitioner agree that no further progress is likely. The parties, by agreement, may extend the ADR beyond the number of hours stated in the order. During any extension of the ADR, the ADR practitioner may not increase the practitioner's hourly rate for providing services relating to the action.

Committee note: Having a maximum number of hours in the court's order of referral encourages participation in ADR by assuring the parties that the ADR does not require an open-ended commitment of their time and money. Although the parties, without further order of court, may extend the ADR beyond the maximum, an amendment to the time requirements contained in a scheduling order may be made only by order of the court.

Cross reference: See Rule 2-504, concerning scheduling orders, and Rule 17-208, concerning fee schedules and sanctions for noncompliance with an applicable schedule.

(f)Objection; Alternatives.
(1)Applicability. This section applies to a referral to ADR other than a non-fee-for-service settlement conference.
(2)Time for Filing. If the court issues an order referring all or part of an action to ADR, a party, within 30 days after entry of the order, may file (A) an objection to the referral, (B) an alternative proposal, or (C) a "Request to Substitute ADR Practitioner" substantially in the form set forth in section (g) of this Rule. If the order delegates authority to an ADR organization to designate an ADR practitioner, the objection, alternative proposal, or "Request to Substitute ADR Practitioner" shall be filed no later than 30 days after the party is notified by the ADR organization of the designation.
(3)Notification of Rights. An order referring all or part of an action to ADR, an order delegating authority to an ADR organization to designate an ADR practitioner, and an announcement of a determination to enter an order referring all or part of an action to ADR shall include the information set forth in subsection (f)(2) of this Rule.
(4)If No Objection or Alternative Filed. If an objection, alternative proposal, or "Request to Substitute ADR Practitioner" is not filed within the time allowed by this section, the order shall stand, subject to modification by the court.
(5)Ruling. If a party timely objects to a referral, the court shall revoke its order. If the parties offer an alternative proposal or agree on a different ADR practitioner, whether or not the ADR practitioner's name is on the court's list, the court shall revoke or modify its order, as appropriate.
(g)Form of Request to Substitute ADR Practitioner. A Request to Substitute ADR Practitioner shall be substantially in the following form:

[Caption of Case]
REQUEST TO SUBSTITUTE ADR PRACTIONER AND SELECTION OF ADR PRACTIONER BY STIPULATION
We agree to attend ADR conducted by _____________________________________________
___________________________________________________________________________
(Name, address, and telephone number of ADR Practitioner).
We have made payment arrangements with the ADR Practitioner and we understand that the court's fee schedules do not apply to this ADR. We request that the court substitute this ADR Practitioner for the ADR Practitioner designated by the court.
_______________________________________________________________________________________________________
(Signature of Plaintiff) (Signature of Defendant)
_______________________________________________________________________________________________________
(Signature of Plaintiff's Attorney, if any)(Signature of Defendant's Attorney, if any)
[Add additional signature lines for any additional parties and attorneys.]
I, _________________________________________________________________________,
(Name of ADR Practitioner)
agree to conduct the following ADR in the above-captioned case [ check one]:

[]mediation in accordance with Rules 17-103 and 17-105.
[]ADR other than mediation: __________ [specify type of ADR].
At the conclusion of the ADR, I agree to comply with the provisions of Rule 17-202(h).
I solemnly affirm under the penalties of perjury that I have the qualifications prescribed by the following Rules [check all that are true]:
[]Rule 17-205(a) [Basic mediation]
[]Rule 17-205(b) [Business and Technology]
[]Rule 17-205(c) [Economic Issues--Divorce and Annulment]
[]Rule 17-205(d) [Health Care Malpractice]
[]Rule 17-205(e) [Foreclosure]
[]Rule 17-206 [ADR other than mediation]
[]None of the above.

________________________

Signature of ADR Practitioner

(h)Evaluation Forms; Notification to Court. At the conclusion of an ADR, the ADR practitioner shall give to the parties any ADR evaluation forms and instructions provided by the court and promptly advise the court whether all, some, or none of the issues in the action has been resolved.

Md. R. ADR 17-202

This Rule is derived in part from former Rule 17-103(b) and (c)(2)-(4) (2012) and is in part new.

Adopted Nov. 1, 2012, eff. 1/1/2013.