Vietnam pushes mediation agenda
Draft law to encourage mediation and dialogue at court as state seeks to promote alternative dispute resolution.
The Supreme People’s Court of Vietnam is working a draft law on mediation and dialogue at court, emphasizing the State policy of encouraging parties to settle civil cases and matters and administrative lawsuits through mediation and dialogue at court.
The draft outlines how mediation and dialogue at court would be carried out for disputes in civil cases and matters such as those in marriage and family affairs, business, trade, and industrial relations and administrative lawsuits. Mediation and dialogue would be conducted before civil cases and matters or administrative lawsuits are accepted and settled by courts only if involved parties so agree. In order to protect the privacy of participating parties, the draft forbids related agencies, organizations and individuals from disclosing information they have acquired in the process of mediation and dialogue unless such is agreed in advance by information providers.
The draft also forbids the use of audio or visual recording or recording of minutes of mediation and dialogue sessions. Only mediators and dialoguers may take notes to serve the mediation and dialogue. The draft underlines that agencies, organization or individuals may not use statements of involved parties in the mediation and dialogue session as evidence against them unless such is agreed by such parties or prescribed by law. The process of mediation and dialogue for a civil case or matter or an administrative lawsuit would last for at most 20 days or 30 days, for complex cases, according to the draft.