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Practice Direction No. 6 of 2014  Confidentiality of Mediation Proceedings

Practice Direction No. 6 of 2014  Confidentiality of Mediation Proceedings

August 12, 2014




Confidentiality of Mediation Proceedings
This Practice Direction will come into effect on the date of signature. It may be cited as Practice Direction 6 of 2014 — Confidentiality of Mediation Proceedings — and may be abbreviated to PD 6/2014.
1. In circumstances in which parties have entered into mediation communications, either before (pre-action) or after a claim has been filed with the DIFC Courts, the content of those communications shall be treated as having been made on a “without prejudice” basis, and parties will not be able to rely on them during the course of proceedings before the DIFC Courts.
2. The term mediation shall be taken to encompass mediation, conciliation and other forms of alternative dispute resolution provided for under Part 27 of the Rules of the DIFC Courts (RDC).
3. For the purpose of this Practice Direction, communications shall extend to statements that are made orally, through conduct or in writing or other recorded activity. This would not include non-verbal conduct through which no assertions are made, such as the fact that a person attended or did not attend mediation.
4. The Court may admit evidence of mediation communications on any ground (based on applicable legal principles) under which “without prejudice” communications may be admitted as evidence.
5. Where the Court decides to admit evidence of mediation communications pursuant to paragraph 4 above, it shall admit only such part of the mediation communications as it considers necessary for the application of the relevant exception to confidentiality.
6. The Court will not normally permit a mediator to give evidence of mediation communications except as provided in paragraph 4 above.
7. Nothing in this Practice Direction shall affect the general law of confidentiality or privilege.

Dated this 12th day of August 2014
Chief Justice Michael Hwang