UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Mediation and International Settlement Agreements Resulting from Mediation, 2018
Amending the Model Law on International Commercial Conciliation, 2002
The Model Law is designed to assist States in reforming and modernizing their laws on mediation procedure. It provides uniform rules in respect of the mediation process and aims at encouraging the use of mediation and ensuring greater predictability and certainty in its use.
The Model Law was initially adopted in 2002. It was known as the "Model Law on International Commercial Conciliation", and it covered the conciliation procedure. The Model Law has been amended in 2018 with the addition of a new section on international settlement agreements and their enforcement. The Model Law has been renamed "Model Law on International Commercial Mediation and International Settlement Agreements Resulting from Mediation". In its previously adopted texts and relevant documents, UNCITRAL used the term "conciliation" with the understanding that the terms "conciliation" and "mediation" were interchangeable. In amending the Model Law, UNCITRAL decided to use the term "mediation" instead in an effort to adapt to the actual and practical use of the terms and with the expectation that this change will facilitate the promotion and heighten the visibility of the Model Law. This change in terminology does not have any substantive or conceptual implications.
To avoid uncertainty resulting from an absence of statutory provisions, the Model Law addresses procedural aspects of mediation, including appointment of conciliators, commencement and termination of mediation, conduct of the mediation, communication between the mediator and other parties, confidentiality and admissibility of evidence in other proceedings as well as post-mediation issues, such as the mediator acting as arbitrator and enforceability of settlement agreements.
The Model Law provides uniform rules on enforcement of settlement agreements and also addresses the right of a party to invoke a settlement agreement in a procedure. It provides an exhaustive list of grounds that a party can invoke in a procedure covered by the Model Law.
The Model Law can be used as a basis for enactment of legislation on mediation, included, where needed, for implementing the United Nations Convention on International Settlement Agreements Resulting from Mediation.
Accompanying the Model Law, the Guide to Enactment and Use of the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Mediation and International Settlement Agreements Resulting from Mediation was adopted by the Commission in 2002. The Guide to Enactment and Use is a tool that provides background and explanatory information that States can use in the process of modernizing legislation in the area of mediation. The Guide to Enactment and Use also provide other users of the text with useful insight into the Model Law.