Business and Professions Code - BPC

Published: 2015-07-08

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Business and Professions Code - BPC


  ( Heading of Division 1 amended by Stats. 1973, Ch. 77. )

CHAPTER 8. Dispute Resolution Programs [465 - 471.5]

  ( Chapter 8 added by Stats. 1986, Ch. 1313, Sec. 1. )
ARTICLE 1. Legislative Purpose [465 - 465.5]
  ( Article 1 added by Stats. 1986, Ch. 1313, Sec. 1. )


The Legislature hereby finds and declares all of the following:

(a) The resolution of many disputes can be unnecessarily costly, time-consuming, and complex when achieved through formal court proceedings where the parties are adversaries and are subjected to formalized procedures.

(b) To achieve more effective and efficient dispute resolution in a complex society, greater use of alternatives to the courts, such as mediation, conciliation, and arbitration should be encouraged. Community dispute resolution programs and increased use of other alternatives to the formal judicial system may offer less threatening and more flexible forums for persons of all ethnic, racial, and socioeconomic backgrounds. These alternatives, among other things, can assist in the resolution of disputes between neighbors, some domestic disputes, consumer-merchant disputes, and other kinds of disputes in which the parties have continuing relationships. A noncoercive dispute resolution forum in the community may also provide a valuable prevention and early intervention problem-solving resource to the community.

(c) Local resources, including volunteers reflective of the diversity of the community and available public buildings should be utilized to achieve more accessible, cost-effective resolutions of disputes. Additional financial resources are needed to expand, stabilize, and improve existing programs and entities which sponsor alternative dispute resolution.

(d) Courts, prosecuting authorities, law enforcement agencies, and administrative agencies should encourage greater use of alternative dispute resolution techniques whenever the administration of justice will be improved.

(e) Counties should consider increasing the use of alternative dispute resolution in their operations as plans for court reform are developed and implemented.

(f) The Judicial Council should consider, in redrafting or updating any of the official pleading forms used in the trial courts of this state, the inclusion of information on options for alternative dispute resolution.

(Added by Stats. 1986, Ch. 1313, Sec. 1.)


It is the intent of the Legislature to permit counties to accomplish all of the following:

(a) Encouragement and support of the development and use of alternative dispute resolution techniques.

(b) Encouragement and support of community participation in the development, administration, and oversight of local programs designed to facilitate the informal resolution of disputes among members of the community.

(c) Development of structures for dispute resolution that may serve as models for resolution programs in other communities.

(d) Education of communities with regard to the availability and benefits of alternative dispute resolution techniques.

(e) Encouragement of courts, prosecuting authorities, public defenders, law enforcement agencies, and administrative agencies to work in cooperation with, and to make referrals to, dispute resolution programs.

At the time that the state assumes the responsibility for the funding of California trial courts, consideration shall be given to the Dispute Resolution Advisory Council’s evaluation of the effectiveness of alternative dispute resolution programs and the feasibility of the operation of a statewide program of grants, with the intention of funding alternative dispute resolution programs on a statewide basis.

(Added by Stats. 1986, Ch. 1313, Sec. 1.)