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FOR RELEASE:
CONTACTS:
Tuesday, September 24, 2002
Nancy A. Condon 202-728-8379
Michael Shokouhi 202-728-8304


NASD Kicks Off Mediation Settlement Month; Lower Mediation Prices for October

Washington, D.C. — NASD announced that its annual Mediation Settlement Month event will take place this October, offering parties special incentives to try mediation as an alternative to arbitration. Parties that mediate cases in the NASD forum during October will be able to do so anywhere in the country at significantly reduced rates.

 

Settlement Month marks NASD's sixth annual settlement event, and the seventh anniversary of NASD's steadily growing mediation program.

 

"We are proud of the success of the mediation program, which has helped an increasing number of parties to resolve disputes through a highly efficient process. This year's Settlement Month will be another opportunity to encourage more people to consider mediation as a less expensive and effective alternative to arbitration," said Linda D. Fienberg, President of NASD Dispute Resolution.

 

Mediation is a voluntary, non-binding dispute resolution process in which a trained, impartial individual helps participants negotiate and reach a settlement. The mediation process is unique in that there are no "winners" or "losers;" instead, the mediator assists the parties in reaching a resolution that is acceptable to all.

 

Hundreds of mediators have agreed to reduce their normal fees during Settlement Month, allowing NASD to present substantial savings to the parties. In October, mediation prices will be as follows:

  • Cases with an amount in controversy up to $25,000 will cost only $100 per party for a 4-hour mediation- the same as our regular reduced rates for small claims;

  • Cases with an amount in controversy from $25,001 to $100,000 will cost only $200 per party for a 4-hour mediation - down from the normal range of about $300 to $600 per party; and

  • Cases with an amount in controversy over $100,000 will cost only $500 per party for an 8-hour mediation - down from the normal range of about $800 to $2,000 per party.

In addition, NASD will reduce by one-half its normal mediation filing fees.

 

In the past seven years, parties have used the mediation process in over 7,000 cases with, approximately 80 percent resulting in a settlement between the parties. A recent survey reported that 92 percent of the individuals resolving disputes through mediation reported satisfaction with NASD staff and 90 percent reported satisfaction with their mediator.

 

Interested parties can view the interactive map of available mediation locations on the NASD Web site at http://www.nasdadr.com/hearing_locs.asp.

 

Mediation Settlement Day in New York

 

For the second year in a row, NASD is also sponsoring Mediation Settlement Day in New York. The event is organized by the Association of the Bar of the City of New York, the leading bar organization in New York City, and co-sponsored by a coalition of public service organizations, bar organizations, law schools, and courts. The Honorable Andrew Jackson Young, Jr., former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, has agreed to serve as Honorary Chair of Mediation Settlement Day 2002.

 

Mediation Settlement Day helps to focus parties in all kinds of disputes on the possibilities and promise of settling their dispute with the assistance of a mediator, in a process where they will retain control of the outcome

 

Mediation Settlement Day 2002 is endorsed by national organizations such as the American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution, the Association for Conflict Resolution, Inc., CPR Institute for Dispute Resolution, and the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Building upon last year's remarkable success, more programs throughout New York City and, around New York State have joined the effort to raise the profile of mediation throughout the city, and focus judges, attorneys and business people on working collaboratively to resolve disputes.

 

NASD is the leading private-sector provider of financial regulatory services, dedicated to bringing integrity to the markets and confidence to investors through effective and efficient regulation and complementary compliance and technology-based services. NASD touches virtually every aspect of the securities business -- from registering and educating all industry participants, to examining securities firms, enforcing both NASD rules and the federal securities laws, and administering the largest dispute resolution forum for investors and member firms. For more information, please visit our Web site at www.nasd.com.