Central China's Henan province has been persistently promoting pre-trial mediation as part of its non-litigation dispute resolution mechanism in recent years - with positive results.
As a result of a joint effort by the province's judicial department and its high people's court, Henan has, so far, set up 248 people's mediation offices in lower courts and 307 in tribunals across the province.
At present, there are 1,576 people's mediators stationed in courts around Henan, 54.3 percent of whom are full-time mediators and 77.3 percent of whom have a college degree or above. Since many of the mediators are people with work experience in legal professions, such as retired judges and procurators, the quality and credibility of the mediations are guaranteed.
In 2020, pre-trial mediation organizations across Henan resolved 42,700 disputes, 21.15 percent of which ended in mediation agreements confirmed by courts. What's more, 28.6 percent of the cases filed with courts last year were distributed to mediators for resolution, saving parties' time and costs and relieving the burden on courts.
To improve pre-trial mediation work, the province plans to further clarify the work division between judges and mediators, strengthen the mediator selection, training and evaluation process, and bring new blood into the mediators' team.