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Co-op and Condo Mediation Project
The Co-op and Condo Mediation Project is designed to settle residential disagreements amicably for a more satisfying and less costly resolution than standard courthouse litigation can provide.
Sponsored by the Committees on Cooperative and Condominium Law and Alternative Dispute Resolution, the program offers an impartial mediator from a pre-approved group of mediators to help facilitate the dispute as quickly and painlessly as possible. The service is available in situations where all parties involved are prepared to seek mediation. The dispute can involve owners, renters, sponsors, boards of directors, managing agents, contractors, insurers and others involved in the dispute.
The Co-op and Condo Mediation Project brochure with additional information can be found here.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is mediation?
Mediation is an informal, voluntary approach to settling disputes instead of going to court. A neutral person -- a trained mediator -- facilitates negotiations between participants in reaching a mutually acceptable resolution to their dispute. Mediation is confidential and non-binding; any participant or the mediator may stop the process at any time. If the participants reach resolution, a settlement agreement will be written and signed and is binding on the participants.
2. Who is involved?
The parties to the dispute and a selected mediator are the key people. A party may, but need not, have an attorney present; the parties themselves are the owners and drivers of the process. Occasionally, a witness or expert may be called to participate.
3. What are the advantages of mediation?
- It allows the participants to decide for themselves how to resolve the case rather than leaving the decision to a judge.
- Approximately 75% of cases brought to mediation result in an enforceable agreement.
- Mediation saves time and money - it is quicker and less expensive than litigation.
- A party may, but need not, retain an attorney to attend the mediation.
- The process is private and confidential - what is said in mediation cannot be used in any subsequent proceedings.
4. Disputes which may be mediated include those between:
- Owners about noise, odors, smoke or other issues or complaints
- An Owner and the Board regarding repairs or other matters
- The Management company and the Board or an Owner
- A Contractor and the Management company or the Board
- A Renter and an Owner or the Board
- Other issues involving Owners, Board, Management and Contractors
5. Is there a fee for mediation?
Yes, there is a $100 non-refundable administrative fee per party. There is an hourly fee for the mediator. Mediators' hourly fees shall not exceed $600.
6. What do I do next?
If you are considering mediation, you should read the brochure carefully. The parties to the dispute need to sign the Agreement to Mediate form in the back of the brochure, and return the form and the $100 per party non-refundable administration fee to the New York City Bar Association, 42 West 44th Street, New York, NY 10036, Attn: Co-op/Condo Mediation Services. (Checks may be made out to The New York City Bar Association.) The City Bar will then provide you with the name of a qualified and neutral mediator. Your mediator will then contact you to arrange your first mediation session.
To learn more about this program or if you have additional questions, please contact Lauren Axelrod at (212) 382-6674 or LAxelrod@nycbar.org.