A: You must be registered with our office if you expect to handle court-referred or court-ordered cases. If you do not expect or intend to handle court-referred or court-ordered cases, you may still wish to register for these reasons:
Credential: Registration is the only government-issued credential for ADR professionals in Georgia, and it is one of only a handful nationally that are issued by a state Supreme Court. As such, Georgia registration is accepted and respected by ADR professionals and organizations in most other states. Your registration status is easily confirmed by the public through our website.
Credibility: Registration demonstrates to your clients and colleagues that you have invested in considerable professional training for your ADR practice, that you measure your qualifications according to explicit standards, and that you have made a commitment to pursue continuing education in the field. Registration is an indicator of your professionalism.
Rules: Registration allows you to formally adopt the Georgia Supreme Court ADR Rules as the procedural and ethical framework for your ADR practice.
Protection: In court-ordered or court-referred mediations, conducted by a properly registered mediator, the Supreme Court ADR Rules grant the parties blanket confidentiality protection to their mediation-generated statements, documents, and evidence, and the mediator’s notes and records. The rules also prohibit a mediator from being subpoenaed or otherwise required to testify in court about the mediation.
Registration also offers properly registered mediators conducting court-ordered or court-referred mediations broad immunity from liability for civil damages “for any statement, action, omission or decision made in the course of any ADR process unless that statement, action, omission or decision is 1) grossly negligent and made with malice or 2) is in willful disregard of the safety or property of any party to the ADR process.”