PRACTICE DIRECTION 51I - THE SECOND MEDIATION SERVICE PILOT SCHEME
Contents of this Practice Direction
Scope and interpretation
1.1 In this Practice Direction –
(a) ‘the CCMCC’ means the County Court Money Claims Centre;
(b) ‘MCOL’ means Money Claim Online; and
(c) ‘the Mediation Service’ means the Small Claims Mediation Service operated by Her Majesty's Courts and Tribunals Service.
1.2 This Practice Direction is made under rule 51.2. It provides for a pilot scheme (‘the Second Mediation Service Pilot Scheme’) to operate in the CCMCC, the Production Centre and MCOL for a period of 12 months from 1 April 2013 to 31 March 2014.
1.3 The Second Mediation Service Pilot Scheme will apply to claims issued at the CCMCC, the Production Centre or MCOL if –
(a) the claim is one which would normally be allocated to the small claims track pursuant to rule 26.6; and
(b) the directions questionnaires are filed, as appropriate, at the CCMCC, the Production Centre or MCOL, within the 6 month period of the pilot.
1.4 This pilot scheme will not apply to –
(a) road traffic accident, personal injury or housing disrepair claims; or
(b) any claim in which any party to the proceedings does not agree to referral to the Mediation Service.
2.1 Where all parties indicate on their directions questionnaire that they agree to mediation, the claim will be referred to the Mediation Service.
3.1 The following modifications will apply during the operation of the Mediation Service Pilot Scheme.
3.2 In Practice Direction 7C –
(a) paragraph 1.3(2) is modified to provide that the functions of the Production Centre will include –
(i) the handling of directions questionnaires; and
(ii) provisionally deciding the track which appears to be most suitable for the claim; and
(b) paragraph 1.3(2)(e) is modified by substituting for the words‘following the filing of a defence’, the words ‘if all parties have filed their directions questionnaires’.
3.3 In Practice Direction 7E, paragraph 12.1(3) is modified by substituting the following –
'(3) if a defence is filed to all or part of the claim, when all parties have filed their directions questionnaires;'
3.4 Rule 26.5(1) is modified to provide that if –
(a) a claim is referred to the Mediation Service under this pilot scheme; and
(b) the CCMCC, the Production Centre or MCOL has not been notified in writing that a settlement has been agreed,
the claim will be allocated to a track in accordance with rule 26.5 no later than four weeks from the date on which the last directions questionnaire is filed.
4.1 If a claim to which this pilot scheme applies is settled, the proceedings will automatically be stayed with liberty to apply for the purpose of carrying into effect the settlement agreement, unless the parties have agreed that the claim is to be dismissed or discontinued.