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Arbitration and Mediation Center
The German Hellenic Chamber of Commerce and Industry, as an official representative of German economic entities in Greece, scopes to promote the mutual economic relationships between Greece and Germany. The field of its mission includes, among others, the provision of services with a view to resolving disputes between enterprises and/or natural persons participating in the above bilateral commercial relationships. The establishment of the Arbitration and Mediation Organization (AMC) serves the abovementioned objective, since it offers to natural or legal persons or legal entities, irrespective of whether they are members of the Chamber, the possibility of an out of court resolution of disputes with the use of alternative methods, such as Arbitration and Mediation, as well as a combination of these two procedures. The Mediation Department of the AMC ensures the creation of the conditions which shall direct any mediation procedure to a positive outcome in accordance with the provisions of the present Mediation Rules governing the relevant procedure, irrespective of whether the parties have their registered office or their domicile in Greece or abroad. The mediation procedure established by the present Rules aims at achieving an out of court resolution of disputes on the basis of the interests of all parties, an objective which is achieved with the assistance of Mediators accredited pursuant to the provisions of Law no. 3898/2010 on Mediation in Civil and Commercial Cases and appointed from the Registry of Mediators of the AMC.
I. GENERAL PROVISIONS
Article 1 [Scope of application]
1. The provisions of the present Rules apply, upon agreement, to economic disputes between natural or legal persons or legal entities, having the power to dispose of the subject matter of their dispute pursuant to the provisions of article 2 of Law 3898/2010, irrespective of whether the parties to the dispute are members of the German Hellenic Chamber of Commerce or whether the mediations are domestic or cross border procedures.
2. The application of the provisions of the Mediation Rules is subject to the conclusion of an agreement between the parties, the Mediator and the AMC to submit the dispute to the mediation procedure of the AMC. The agreement to submit the dispute to the mediation procedure under the supervision of the AMC (Agreement to submit the dispute to the AMC Mediation) is always made in writing, in accordance with the provisions of article 7 par. 6 of the present Rules. An agreement which is executed through exchange of signed letters, telexes or faxes and electronic messages (e-mails) shall also qualify as a written agreement.
3. The Mediation Rules apply also to agreements containing a mediation clause referring to future disputes. A relevant template clause is set out in Annex 1 of the present Rules. In such a case, before the commencement of the mediation procedure the clause shall be confirmed by the conclusion of the agreement to submit the dispute to mediation, as provided for in article 1 par. 2 of the present Rules.
Article 2 [Definitions]
1. The Procedural Rules or the Mediation Rules: The Mediation Rules of the Arbitration and Mediation Center of German Hellenic Chamber of Commerce.
2. Registry of Mediators: The Registry of Mediators of the AMC.
3. Mediator: The third party in relation to the parties to the dispute who is appointed by the parties from the Registry of Mediators (as provided for in article 3 of the present Rules), or which is nominated by the Mediation Coordinator, if the parties wish so; the Mediator is requested to mediate in an appropriate, efficient and impartial manner, under the supervision of the AMC and within the context of the present Rules. In the absence of an agreement by the parties, a sole Mediator is appointed. Upon the parties’ agreement, the Mediator may be assisted by other parties (Assistants, or trainee mediators or employees of the AMC), who are subject to the terms of the present Rules.
4. Mediation Coordinator of the AMC: The person who consults and assists the parties on all issues relating to the conduct of the mediation proceedings and nominates the Mediator when requested by the parties. He/she must be an accredited mediator pursuant to the provisions of Law 3898/2010; he/she is bound by the present Rules by signing a written statement before the commencement of any mediation proceedings stating that he/she will keep the confidentiality of the proceedings. Also, he/she monitors and supervises the full application and implementation of the provisions of the Mediation Rules by exercising his general and special duties provided for herein.
5. The Head of the AMC: The Head of the Legal Department of the German Hellenic Chamber of Commerce. The Mediation Coordinator informs the Head of the Department of the progress of all mediation proceedings. He / She has access to all files of any proceedings, abiding by the confidentiality of the proceedings.
6. The Mediation Secretariat of the AMC: The relevant department which ensures that all procedural needs arising out of the mediation proceedings are met.
II. MEDIATION PROCEEDINGS
Article 3 [Confidentiality of the mediation – Principle of Confidentiality and Secrecy]
1. The Mediator, the parties, their attorneys, the Mediation Coordinator, the Head of the AMC and the German Hellenic Chamber of Commerce, including its agents, as well as any experts, technical counsels and interpreters, are under the obligation to comply with the principle of confidentiality at all stages of the proceedings. The confidentiality concerns the commencement, the contents and the completion of the mediation proceedings, particularly the subject matter of the mediation, the communication of the parties between themselves and with the Mediator, any statement, proposal, offer or admission that may be made during the mediation proceedings, any document that may have been drawn up exclusively for the purposes of a particular mediation, as well as any other information of which the above persons take knowledge in the context of any mediation proceedings, unless the parties agree expressly in writing otherwise. The persons that participate in the mediation proceedings are bound to keep the confidentiality of the contents of the agreement reached by the parties during the mediation proceedings, unless the disclosure of its contents is required for the performance of such agreement pursuant to the provisions of article 9 par. 3 of Law 3898/2010.
2. All the persons mentioned above are not allowed to be examined as witnesses or to be appointed as experts or technical counsels or to participate in any other capacity in any trial or arbitration which may follow in the event that the mediation procedure fails. Furthermore, such persons are under the obligation to abstain from producing at any trial or arbitration any evidence in general resulting from the mediation proceedings or related to the abovementioned proceedings, unless it is imposed by legal provisions of public order. The information of which the non disclosure will cause, in the Mediator’s opinion, a serious danger of severe damage to a person’s life or safety or a serious danger of such person’s involvement in illegal procedures is not covered by the confidentiality principle.
3. The information which the Mediator obtains from one party during their meetings is not disclosed to the other party without the former party’s consent.
4. The AMC reserves its right to use certain data, such as the subject matter of the dispute and the result of the mediation with a view to use it for statistical purposes, but has to ensure strictly to keep the anonymity of all participants.
Article 4 [The Registry of Mediators]
1. In domestic mediation proceedings, the parties appoint the Mediator(s) exclusively from the Registry of Mediators in effect from time to time. In cross border mediation proceedings, if the parties opt for the mediation procedure to be held with the assistance of more than one Mediator, at least one of them must be appointed from the Registry of Mediators. The other Mediator(s) must be Mediators accredited by an acknowledged institution in Greece or abroad.
2. In the Registry of Mediators for Greek-German and other cross border and domestic disputes the following Mediators may be registered: i) Mediators accredited pursuant to provisions of Law 3898/2010 and ii) Mediators accredited pursuant to foreign legal provisions, provided that they fulfill cumulatively the following registration conditions: a) they have been trained for at least 80 hours in total at an acknowledged domestic or foreign institution, b) they have an attorney professional experience for at least ten (10) years, c) they have an excellent knowledge of the Greek, German either English or French languages.
3. All persons having the attorney professional experience mentioned in paragraph 2 section b may be registered in the above Registry of Mediators, regardless of whether they are or were registered in a Bar Association in Greece or abroad, or whether they are emeritus attorneys or retired attorneys. The excellent knowledge of the Greek, German-, English and French languages results from certificates or graduate studies or/and post graduate studies or in any other appropriate manner evaluated by the Mediation Coordinator per case.
4. The applicants file with the Mediation Department of the AMC the relevant registration application accompanied with an attestation of the payment of the registration fee, the amount of which is determined by a decision of the AMC. The Mediation Coordinator verifies in any appropriate manner whether the typical conditions are cumulatively fulfilled and registers the applicants in the Registry of Mediators or rejects their applications. The applicant receives a notice of respective decision.
5. The Mediators who do not fulfill all the above mentioned conditions, especially the excellent knowledge of the German language, are registered in a special part of the above Registry.
6. The registration in the Registry of Mediators does not create a conflict for the registration of the same person in the Registry of Arbitrators of the AMC.
7. The Mediation Coordinator and the Head of the AMC jointly review said Registry, delete Mediators by means of a decision with justification and register new Mediators. After the lapse of a three year period, the AMC may request from the Mediators who are registered in the above Registry of Mediators to pay a registration renewal fee, the amount of which is determined by a relevant decision of the AMC.
8. The qualification as the Mediation Coordinator does not create a conflict for his/her registration in the Registry of Mediators. In the event that the Mediation Coordinator is appointed as Mediator, the Head of the AMC supervises and monitors the application of the provisions of the present Rules.
Article 5 [Impartiality and Independence of the Mediator – Code of Professional Conduct]
1. The Mediator must be impartial and independent. If there are circumstances that may affect his/her impartiality, he/she must inform the parties and the Mediation Coordinator without any undue delay. The Mediation Coordinator shall promptly inform the Head of the AMC. In such a case, in order for the Mediator to continue, he/she must be certain that he/she is in the position to conduct the Mediation with full independence and neutrality and after having obtained the express consent of the parties. The Mediator, on whom a conflict of interests appears to exist, is obligatorily replaced, or if such conflict appears at a subsequent stage of the proceedings, he/she is removed upon the Mediation Coordinator’s opinion and another Mediator is appointed in replacement of the removed one, unless the parties expressly agree otherwise in writing. A conflict of interests exists, particularly, when the Mediator is related in any way with the parties involved and the dispute, for the resolution of which he/she is appointed or when he/she has an interest in the dispute and in any agreements to be reached – at a financial, personal or other level.
2. The Mediator, upon acceptance of his/her appointment, signs obligatorily the relevant statement as to his/her impartiality and independence, which he/she gives to the Mediation Secretariat of the AMC. His/her failure to sign the above statement for any cause is equivalent to refusal of his/her appointment.
3. The Mediator is bound by the present Rules, the Rules of Conduct of the AMC, as well as by the Rules of Conduct established by ministerial decision no. 109088/2011. The Mediator, the Mediation Coordinator and the Secretariat of the AMC do not provide any legal advice and abstain from giving any such advice, even if the parties request such advice, and are informed of such obligation of the above persons.
Article 6 [Liability of the Mediator, the Mediation Coordinator, the Head of the AMC, and the German Hellenic Chamber of Commerce and its agents]
The Mediator is liable only for fraud and intentional misconduct committed during the exercise of his/her duties. The Mediation Coordinator, the Head of Mediation AMC and the German Hellenic Chamber together with its agents are not liable for any act or omission committed by the Mediator during the exercise of his/her duties.
Article 7 [Commencement of the mediation proceedings]
1. The mediation commences upon submission of a written Request for mediation to the Mediation Secretariat of the AMC at the registered office of German Hellenic Chamber of Commerce (10-12 Dorylaiou street, 115 21 Athens). The Request for mediation shall include at least the following items:
a) First and last name /Company name of the parties and contact details of the parties and their attorneys (address, mobile phone number and fixed line phone number, fax, e-mail),
b) The mediation clause or the extract of the agreement, containing the agreement of the parties to submit their dispute to mediation, if there is such agreement,
c) A brief description of the facts of the case, the cause of the dispute and the claims (of the party filing the Request),
d) A written statement of interest for the resolution of the dispute by submitting it to the Mediation of the AMC, as well as a written statement of unreserved acceptance of the Mediation Rules,
e) The value of the dispute, at least approximately.
The party filing the Request may attach thereto any documents related to the dispute. Within three (3) days from the filing of the above Request the party filing the Request shall pay the filing fees in accordance with article 16 and Annex 2 of the present Rules.
2. After the commencement of the procedure the Mediation Coordinator addresses to the other party or other parties an invitation to participate in the proceedings. In case the other party or parties accept the mediation, it/they shall inform the Mediation Secretariat in writing within 10 (ten) days from reception of the relevant invitation, by accepting the present Mediation Rules, it/they shall pay the filing fees and submit a file for the dispute which includes at least the items 1 d) - 1 e) mentioned above.
3. In case of a multi-party dispute, of which some decide to participate in the mediation proceedings, said parties shall decide whether they wish the mediation proceeding to continue. Said parties notify the Mediation Secretariat of their decision. If said parties wish so, the Mediation Secretariat informs the parties that do not participate in the mediation proceedings of the commencement of the proceedings.
4. In the event that the other party or parties refuse expressly to participate in the mediation or do not reply to the written invitation of the Mediation Coordinator within ten (10) business days, the latter informs the party filing the Request of the termination of the proceedings.
5. Within a deadline of ten (10) business days upon acceptance of mediation proceedings by the other party in accordance with the provisions of paragraph 2 of present article and if the parties wish so, with the assistance of the Mediation Coordinator, the parties appoint the Mediator from the Registry of Mediators in effect at the time. In the event that the parties do not wish to nominate the Mediator or cannot agree on the person, the Mediator is selected by the Mediation Coordinator. The final appointment of the Mediator is subject to the lack of objection to such appointment on the part of one of the parties at least. The Mediator Coordinator may announce to the parties the termination of the proceedings, in the event that no agreement is reached on the person of the Mediator. In case there are more than one Mediators in cross border disputes, at least one Mediator is appointed from the Registry of Mediators, whereas the second one may be appointed by a common decision of the parties among accredited Mediators in Greece or abroad, provided that he/she fulfills the conditions of article 4 par. 2.
6. After reaching an agreement on the person of the Mediator and the finalization of the more specific conditions of the mediation proceedings, the Mediation Coordinator provides the parties with the Agreement to submit the dispute to the Mediation of the AMC, which is signed by the parties and the Mediator and is validated by the Mediation Coordinator and the Head of the AMC. The parties, the Mediator and the AMC take each of one copy.
7. After the signing of the Agreement to submit the dispute to the AMC Mediation, the Mediator contacts the parties without undue delay. Furthermore, within a deadline of five (5) business days from the signing of the Mediation Agreement, the parties may complete the files submitted as mentioned above with documents which either refer to the summary of the dispute or which the parties wish expressly to be mentioned during the mediation proceedings, as well as with pleadings in case the dispute has been already submitted to a court or arbitral tribunal. The parties may also expressly state which documents they wish to keep confidential.
Article 8 [The rules of mediation proceedings]
The mediation proceedings are conducted pursuant to the Agreement to submit the dispute to the Mediation of the AMC, the provisions of the present Rules and in case of a regulative gap, pursuant to the provisions of Greek Law in effect.
Article 9 [Place of the mediation proceedings – Time and duration of the proceedings]
1. In the absence of an agreement to the contrary, the place of mediation proceedings is in Athens at the registered office of German Hellenic Chamber of Commerce (10-12 Dorylaiou street, 115 21 Athens). In case that the facilities of the Chamber are not available or are not adequate for any reason or due to the number of the parties involved, the mediation proceedings take place at a place suggested by the Mediation Coordinator and accepted by the parties and the Mediator.
2. The Mediation Coordinator, the Mediator and the parties jointly determine the details of the mediation meeting (day and time). In case that more than one mediation meeting are required, the Mediator informs the Mediation Coordinator for the outcome and the duration of every mediation meeting. The Mediator decides together with the parties for determining the following mediation meeting.
3. The Mediator may interrupt the mediation proceedings, if he/she considers that it is required for its progress for any reason. The mediation proceedings continue upon the parties’ written agreement.
4. Without the parties’ explicit agreement the mediation proceedings may not last for more than 45 (forty five) days after the Mediator’s appointment. The Mediation Coordinator may extend such duration upon the Mediator’s and the parties’ agreement.
Article 10 [Language of the Mediation]
The parties agree upon the language of the mediation proceedings. If the parties wish so, the Mediation Coordinator may assist them in the search of a competent interpreter, who shall be bound by the principle of confidentiality of the mediation proceedings.
Article 11 [Representation of the parties – Privacy of meetings]
1. The parties attend the mediation proceedings together with their attorneys or they are represented by the latter. The attorneys’ fees are paid exclusively by the parties.
2. The meetings during the mediation proceedings are private. Other persons except for the parties and their attorneys may attend the mediation proceedings only upon the parties’ consent.
Article 12 [No keeping of minutes]
No minutes are kept during the mediation proceedings. After the end of the proceedings the Mediator and the persons who may assist him/her shall destroy, in the presence of the Mediation Coordinator, all documents and notes relating to the contents of the mediation proceedings.
Article 13 [Expert report]
In the event that the Mediator considers that the participation of an expert in the mediation would be beneficial for the proceedings, the parties shall agree on his/her person and shall bear exclusively the costs of the expert opinion and his/her fees. The expert is bound by the principle of confidentiality.
Article 14 [Termination of the mediation proceedings]
1. In the event that the parties reached an agreement on the dispute, such agreement is stipulated in writing in a contract. The Mediator assists the parties at drafting a precise and full text of agreement. The abovementioned agreement constitutes a part of the Mediation Minutes pursuant to the provisions of article 9 of Law 3898/2010. In the event that the agreement does not concern or does not concern only a claim that may be enforced, the Mediator may incite the parties to include an arbitration clause in said agreement. Upon signing the Mediation Agreement and drawing up the Mediation Minutes the mediation proceedings are completed. The Mediator informs the Mediation Coordinator of the completion of the proceedings in writing.
2. Each of the parties may terminate at any time the mediation proceedings by giving a written notice to the Mediator or the Mediation Coordinator without stating any particular reason for doing so.
3. The Mediator may decide to terminate the mediation proceedings, if there are important reasons, particularly in the case that the parties are not able to reach an agreement. Also, the Mediator may retire himself/herself from the mediation by giving a written statement with justification to the Mediation Coordinator. The Mediator Coordinator informs the parties in writing of the termination of the mediation proceedings and may incite the parties to refer their dispute to arbitration.
4. In the event that the parties have not reached an agreement on the dispute, the Mediator drafts the Mediation Minutes in which he/she ascertains the failure of the proceedings.
Article 15 [Effects on other proceedings]
1. During the mediation proceedings the parties are bound not to initiate any judicial or arbitral proceedings for the claims that constitute the subject matter of the mediation proceedings. Also, during the pending trial or arbitration proceedings the parties are bound to request voluntarily the interruption of the proceedings for as long as the mediation proceedings last in case that the mediation proceedings affect the trial or the arbitration.
2. Any deadlines having been set contractually by the parties regarding the parties’ rights and obligations that constitute the subject matter of the mediation proceedings are suspended during the entire term of the mediation proceedings to the extent provided for by the Law.
Article 16 [Fees of the mediation proceedings]
1. The fees of the mediation proceedings consist of the filing fees, the Mediator’s fee, as well as-upon the parties’ relevant agreement-any expenses of the AMC and the Mediator.
2. The filing fees and the Mediator’s fee are set in accordance with the Table of Fees (Annex 2), which constitutes an indispensable part of the present Rules.
3. The parties bear equally the expenses of the mediation proceedings, unless otherwise agreed in writing. The parties are severally and jointly liable vis-à-vis the Organization for the expenses of the Mediation proceedings. The total amount of the filings fees and the Mediator’s fees for four (4) hours are paid in advance by each of the parties in accordance with his/her proportion. After the payment of said amount the Mediation Secretariat delivers the file to the Mediator. The remainder of the Mediator’s fee is paid in parts by the parties following a relevant invitation by the Mediation Secretariat. Upon completion of the mediation proceedings a relevant settlement of fees is made.
4. The filing fees are paid even if a full or partial agreement is not reached between the parties.
5. In case of a multi-party mediation, the expenses are increased by twenty per cent (20 %) for each additional party.
III. MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS
Article 17 [Applicable Law]
1. The mediation proceedings held in accordance with the present Rules are governed by Law 3898/2010 as it currently stands, as well as by any other Greek legal provisions on Mediation, regardless of the place of the meetings and the applicable law to the dispute.
2. The Greek Courts have exclusive international jurisdiction to hear any dispute that may arise out of the mediation proceedings which are subject to the present Rules.
Article 18 [Language versions of the Mediation Rules]
1. The present Mediation Rules are drafted in Greek, German and in English. The Greek and German texts are applicable to the same extent to any mediation proceedings.
2. In the event that there are divergences between the two language versions, the Mediation Coordinator interprets the relevant articles in a manner that their contents are harmonized, taking into account the Mediation Rules in their entirety.
3. In the event that the interpretation provided for in the above paragraph is not feasible, the language in which the relevant mediation proceedings have been conducted shall determine which language version of the Mediation Rules shall apply.
Article 19 [Applicable version]
The present Mediation Rules are applicable as they stand at the date of commencement of the mediation proceedings.