24 CFR § 3288.35 - Mediation.

§ 3288.35 Mediation.

(a) Mediator. The dispute resolution provider will provide for the selection of a mediator. The selected mediator will not be the person who screened the dispute resolution request. The selected mediator will mediate the dispute and attempt to facilitate a settlement. If a party identifies any other party that should be included in the mediation, the mediator will contact the other party and provide information about the scheduled mediation meetings.

(b) Time -

(1) For reaching settlement. Except as provided in paragraph (b)(2) of this section, the parties are allowed 30 days from the commencement of the mediation to reach a mediated settlement. In every case, the dispute resolution provider will notify the parties and the homeowner, in writing, of the date of the commencement of the mediation.

(2) Alleged defects presenting an unreasonable risk of injury, death, or significant loss or damage to valuable personal property. For mediations involving alleged defects that appear to present an unreasonable risk of injury, death, or significant loss or damage to valuable personal property as determined by the screening neutral, the parties have a maximum 10 days from the commencement of the mediation to reach a settlement.

(3) For corrective repairs. Unless a longer period is agreed to in writing by the parties to the mediated settlement and the homeowner, corrective repairs must be completed no later than 30 days after the date the settlement agreement is signed by the applicable parties.

(c) Denial of dispute. During mediation, denial of a dispute by all parties without acceptance of responsibility will result in the mediator referring the matter to arbitration for determination of the defect and responsibility for the defect.

(d) Written settlement agreement.

(1) Upon reaching an agreement, the parties will sign a written settlement agreement. The dispute resolution provider will forward copies of the agreements with the original signatures of the parties to the parties, the homeowner, and to HUD.

(2) Sample agreements will be made available to the parties as drafting guidance by the dispute resolution provider.

(e) Failure of mediation. If mediation is not successful, parties or the homeowner may proceed to nonbinding arbitration, as provided in § 3288.40 of this part.

(f) Confidentiality. Except for the report of an alleged defect, any request for dispute resolution, and any written settlement agreement, all other documents and communications provided in confidence and used in the mediation will be confidential, in accordance with the Administrative Dispute Resolution Act of 1996 (5 U.S.C. 571 et seq.).

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