Mediation and other alternative dispute resolution processes
1. In this Order:
the “2017 Act” means the Mediation Act 2017;
each of the expressions “mediation”, “mediation settlement” and “mediator” has the same meaning as in section 2 of the 2017 Act;
“another ADR process” means conciliation or such other dispute resolution process as may be approved by the Court, but does not include mediation or arbitration.
2. An application by a party under section 16(1) of the 2017 Act shall be by motion on notice to the other party or parties and shall be made within the period mentioned in section 16(4) of the 2017 Act. An application under section 16(4) of the 2017 Act to dispense with the requirement for an affidavit may be made ex parte.
3. (1) The Court may issue an invitation to consider mediation mentioned in section 16(1) of the 2017 Act of its own motion in any civil proceedings to which the 2017 Act applies, on any occasion on which such proceedings are before the Court and where, following an invitation by the Court, the parties decide to engage in mediation, the Court may, having heard the parties, make such orders in accordance with section 16(2) of the 2017 Act as it considers appropriate.
(2) An application by a party to civil proceedings under section 19(1) of the 2017 Act for an order adjourning the proceedings shall be by motion on notice to the other party or parties, but need not be grounded upon any affidavit.
4. If all of the parties to civil proceedings (including any third parties) agree at a mediation on the terms of an order to be made, including an order for the final disposition of the proceedings, the Court may make the order.
5. (1) An application under section 11(3) of the 2017 Act to enforce the terms of a mediation settlement shall:
(a) where the mediation settlement concerns proceedings pending before the Court, be by notice of motion, or
(b) where there are no proceedings pending before the Court concerning the subject matter of the mediation settlement, be by originating notice of motion,
in either case grounded upon an affidavit sworn by or on behalf of the moving party which shall exhibit and verify the mediation settlement.
(2) Copies of the originating notice of motion or notice of motion, grounding affidavit and any exhibits shall be served on each other party to the mediation settlement and filed not later than 14 days before the date fixed for the hearing of the application.
(3) Each other party to the mediation settlement may serve and file a replying affidavit not later than seven days before the date fixed for the hearing of the application.
6. (1) An application to the Master under Regulation 5(2) of the European Communities (Mediation) Regulations 2011 (S.I. No. 209 of 2011) (in this rule referred to as “the Regulations”) may be made by originating motion ex parte grounded on an affidavit exhibiting the agreement concerned and entitled in the matter of that agreement and in the matter of the Regulations.
(2) Subject to the power conferred on the Master by Regulation 5(5) of the Regulations to require a party who is not an applicant to verify, by affidavit or otherwise, that party’s consent to the application, the affidavit referred to in sub-rule (1) shall exhibit the written consent of each other party to the mediation who is not an applicant.
7. (1) A mediator’s report required by section 17 of the 2017 Act shall be entitled as in the proceedings to which it relates and shall be submitted to the Court by the filing by the mediator of an affidavit verifying and exhibiting the report.
(2) An application under section 17(2) of the 2017 Act for a direction to dispense with the requirement that a copy of the report be given to the parties at least seven days prior to its submission to the Court may be made ex parte.
8. Every statutory declaration required by section 14(2) or, as the case may be, section 15(2) of the 2017 Act shall be filed in the Central Office and a copy served on the defendant.
9. Notwithstanding any other provision of these Rules, if proceedings are referred to mediation, the time for taking any step in the proceedings under any of those Rules shall, unless the Court otherwise orders, be calculated as if time did not run during the period of any adjournment to facilitate the mediation.
III. Other ADR processes
10. (1) The Court, on the application of any of the parties or of its own motion, may, when it considers it appropriate and having regard to all the circumstances of the case, order that proceedings or any issue therein be adjourned for such time as the Court considers just and convenient and—
(i) invite the parties to use another ADR process to settle or determine the proceedings or issue, or
(ii) where the parties consent, refer the proceedings or issue to such process,
and may, for the purposes of such invitation or reference, invite the parties to attend such information session on the use of another ADR process, if any, as the Court may specify.
(2) Where the parties decide to use another ADR process, the Court may make an order extending the time for compliance by any party with any provision of these Rules or any order of the Court in the proceedings, and may make such further or other orders or give such directions as the Court considers will facilitate the effective use of that process.
11. An application by a party for an order under rule 10 shall be by motion on notice to the opposing party or parties, or without such motion at any other time when the proceedings are before the Court.
12. Save where the Court for special reason to be recited in the Court’s order allows, an application for an order under rule 10 shall not be made later than 28 days before the date on which the proceedings are first listed for hearing.
 Superseded amendments: Order 56A – “Arbitration (International Commercial) Act 1998” inserted by SI 109 of 2006, effective 31 March 2006. Order 56A deleted by SI 361 of 2010, which created a new Order 56 in place of Orders 56 and 56A, effective 17 August 2010.
SI 361 of 2010, article 2 also provides: “Nothing in these Rules shall: (a) affect the validity of any step taken or any other thing done in any proceedings concerning any arbitration initiated before the repeal by section 4 of the Arbitration Act 2010 of the Arbitration Acts 1954 to 1998 (in this Article, the “repeal”), and any such proceedings shall, save where the court in those proceedings otherwise orders, be continued and completed as if these Rules had not been made; (b) require that any proceedings, whether or not pending before a court or before an arbitral tribunal at the time of the repeal, in respect of any right, privilege, obligation or liability acquired, accrued or incurred under the Arbitration Acts 1954 to 1998 be taken in accordance with these Rules and any proceedings taken under those Acts in respect of any such right, privilege, obligation or liability may be instituted, continued or enforced as if these Rules had not been made.”
Paragraph 3 of SI 150 of 2012 also provides: “Notwithstanding the provisions of the Rules of the Superior Courts (Arbitration) 2010 (SI No 361 of 2010), Order 56, rule 6A of the Rules of the Superior Courts shall apply to proceedings concerning any arbitration initiated before the repeal by section 4 of the Arbitration Act 2010 of the Arbitration Acts 1954 to 1998.” An additional Order 56A rule 5 was inserted by SI 357 of 2012, effective 15 October 2012.