THE LAWYER AS MEDIATOR: PROFESSIONAL RESPONSIBILITY PROBLEMS OR PROFESSION PROBLEMS?
AbstractThe increasing emphasis on alternative forms of dispute resolution has focussed the attention of the legal profession on the process of mediation and the lawyer's role in that process. In this article, I examine the major result of that attention professional responsibility regulations for the lawyer as mediator. By examining the significant themes that exist in the various Standards of Practice or Codes of Ethics that have been promulgated by the legal profession, and by comparing these developments with the history of traditional professional responsibility regulation, a disturbing conclusion is suggested. While further analvsis and empirical study is necessary, I suggest that this regulation will unnecessarily restrict lawyers from practicing mediation, will dampen the demand for lawyers as mediators and, most unfortunately, will alter the nature of the mediation process.
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