Hong Kong's new Mediation Ordinance

Hong Kong face, Sala Sihombing writes that the Secretary of Justice has gazetted the Mediation Ordinance which will come into effect on 1 January 2013.

The Mediation Ordinance does not deal with the thorny issue of accreditation and this remains an open question in Hong Kong.  However, the Mediation Ordinance does introduce a statutory basis for confidentiality for mediation. The Ordinance confirms the basic premise that mediation proceedings are confidential, and then provides exceptions where disclosure will be permitted without the permission of the court, including information is in the public domain; information is subject to discovery (in civil litigation) and dislcosure is required to reduce the danger of injury.  These exceptions are quite broad and in addition, the court may allow disclosure.  It will be interesting to see how these exceptions impact the desire for confidentiality that marks so many mediations.

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