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South Carolina
Judicial Branch

Rule 9
Compensation of Neutral

(a) By Agreement. When the parties stipulate the neutral, the parties and the neutral shall agree upon compensation.

(b) By Appointment. When the mediator is appointed by the Clerk of Court pursuant to Rule 4(c), Rule 4(d)(2)(B), or Rule 4(d)(2)(C) of these rules, the mediator shall be compensated by the parties at a rate of $200 per hour, provided that the court-appointed mediator shall charge no greater than one hour of time in preparing for the initial ADR conference. Travel time shall not be compensated. Reimbursement of expenses to the mediator shall be limited to: (i) mileage costs accrued by the mediator for travel to and from the ADR conference at a per mile rate that is equal to the standard business mileage rate established by the Internal Revenue Service, as periodically adjusted; and (ii) reasonable costs advanced by the mediator on behalf of the parties to the ADR conference, not to exceed $150. An appointed mediator may charge no more than $200 for cancellation of an ADR conference.

(c) Payment of Compensation by the Parties. Unless otherwise agreed to by the parties or ordered by the court, fees and expenses for the ADR conference shall be paid in equal shares per party. Payment shall be due upon conclusion of the conference unless other prior arrangements have been made with the neutral, or unless a party's application for waiver has been granted by the court prior to mediation.

(d) Indigent Cases. Where a mediator has been appointed pursuant to paragraph (b), a party seeking to be exempted from the payment of neutral fees and expenses based on indigency shall file an application for indigency prior to the scheduling of the ADR conference. The application shall be filed on a form approved by the Supreme Court or its designee. Determination of indigency shall be in the discretion of the Chief Judge for Administrative Purposes or his designee. In cases where leave to proceed in forma pauperis has been granted, a party is exempt from payment of neutral fees and expenses, and no application is required to be filed.

Last amended by Order dated April 29, 2021.