On 12 September 2016, the Conseil supérieur du notariat français held a colloquium in partnership with the CNUE on “Mediation and Arbitration: Challenges for European Notarial Practice”. The work was led by Prof. Cyril Nourissat (Jean Moulin University – Lyon 3), with the participation of Mr Behets-Wydemans, Chair of the CNUE’s Mediation working group.
The colloquium, which brought together 130 participants, coincided perfectly with the European political agenda, since on 26 August 2016 the European Commission presented its report (http://ec.europa.eu/justice/civil/files/act_part1_adopted_en.pdf) on the application of Directive 2008/52/EC on certain aspects of mediation in civil and commercial matters, which seeks to facilitate access to alterative dispute resolution and promote the amicable settlement of disputes through the use of mediation.
The Commission’s report is based on several studies in addition to a public consultation conducted at the end of 2015. It concludes, in particular, that there is no need to revise the directive at this stage, but that its application can be improved by developing and sharing good practice, better promotion of mediation to the public and professionals, and support at European level though the co-funding of mediation-related projects.
This last point particularly interests the CNUE, as recalled by Mr Behets-Wydemans during the colloquium. Indeed, the CNUE envisages submitting a co-funding application to the Commission in the coming months to support an ambitious mediation project. The aim of this project will be to support the creation of a European network of notary-mediators and implement a common framework for mediation practice at European level. Furthermore, these objectives are set out in the Notaries of Europe 2020 Plan.
In order to prepare the project, the CNUE organised a meeting of its mediation experts to coincide with the colloquium, in addition to an experimental workshop whose conclusions will enable the organisation of other workshops in Europe to be envisaged.