1. Who to contact?
A system of civil and commercial mediation, aimed at settling disputes in respect of any entitlement that the parties are free to renounce or transfer, was introduced in Italy by Legislative Order (decreto legislativo) No 28/2010.
Mediation services are provided by mediation organisations which may be public or private and which are entered in a register of mediation organisations (registro degli organismi di mediazione) kept by the Ministry of Justice.
All information relating to mediation can be found on the website of the Ministry of Justice.
In particular, the list of accredited mediation bodies is published here.
The register should enable you to contact a mediation organisation of your choice and to call on the services of mediators who are members of that organisation. Further information can be obtained direct from the organisation in question.
2. In which areas is recourse to mediation admissible and/or the most common?
Mediation organisations can help to arrive at out-of-court settlements in any dispute that concerns entitlements that the parties are free to renounce or transfer (diritti disponibili). Mediation in Italy is a condition for bringing proceedings in disputes concerning co-ownership, rights in rem, division, inheritance, family agreements, letting, free of charge, leasing of companies, compensation for damage arising from medical and health liability and defamation in the press or other means of advertising, insurance, banking and financial contracts. In such cases, the party must be assisted by a lawyer. It may also be optional, at the invitation of the court or on the basis of an obligation laid down in the contract by the parties.
3. Are there specific rules?
At present, the general rules on mediation in civil and commercial matters are governed by Legislative Decree No 28/2010 (with the amendments introduced by Decree-Law No 69 of 21 June 2013, converted into Law No 98 of 9 August 2013, and subsequently by Decree-Law No 132 of 12 September 2014, converted, with amendments, into Law No 162 of 10 November 2014 and Legislative Decree No 130 of 6 August 2015) and by Ministerial Decree No 180/2010.
A person wishing to become a mediator must satisfy the requirements laid down in Article 4 (3) (b) of Ministerial Order No 180/2010: possession of a diploma of not less than the three-year university degree or, alternatively, membership of a professional body or college; have at least two years’ specific training and refresher training acquired by training bodies accredited by the Ministry of Justice; and in the course of the two-year retraining period they must have taken part as assisted trainees in at least twenty cases of mediation.
The training providers that issue certificates stating that mediators have completed the necessary training courses are public or private bodies accredited by the Ministry of Justice on condition that they meet stated standards.
5. What is the cost of mediation?
Article 16 of Ministerial Decree No 180/2010 laid down the criteria for determining the mediation allowance, which includes the costs of initiating proceedings and the costs of mediation.
The amounts are specified in Table A annexed to the Order. The same varies in relation to the increase in the value of the claim.
6. Is it possible to make the mediation agreement enforceable?
Under Article 12 of Legislative Decree No 28/2010, where all the parties to the mediation are assisted by a lawyer, the agreement signed by the parties and the lawyers themselves is enforceable for compulsory expropriation, enforcement for surrender and release, enforcement of obligations to do and not to do, and registration of a court mortgage. Lawyers certify and certify that the agreement complies with mandatory rules and public policy. In all other cases, the agreement annexed to the minutes shall be approved, at the request of a party, by order of the President of the court, after verification that the mandatory rules and public policy have been complied with. In cross-border disputes referred to in Article 2 of Directive 2008/52/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 21 May 2008, the minutes shall be approved by the President of the court in whose jurisdiction the agreement is to be enforced.
7. Is access to the database of mediators free of charge?
Currently, the Ministry regularly publishes on its website the list of mediation bodies and mediators registered with each mediation body.
This is the link, as indicated in section 1, with free and free access.
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