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Just Court ADR

The blog of Resolution Systems Institute

Posts Tagged ‘evaluation’

RSI Turns 20!

Susan M. Yates, April 22nd, 2015

Can you believe RSI is twenty years old today? Back in 1995, no one could have predicted that what started as an idea – collect and disseminate reliable information about court ADR in Illinois – would become a nationally-recognized non-profit providing a full array of services in support of quality court ADR.

Indeed, RSI’s life as an independent non-profit is much shorter – not quite two years. We started life as part of Chicago’s Center for Conflict Resolution and spun off in July of 2013. These past two years have seen a dramatic expansion of RSI’s services. In addition to the court dispute system design, program monitoring and evaluation, and online resource center at CourtADR.org that have long been staples of RSI’s work, we are now administering court mediation programs and training mediators.

The motivations that undergirded the founding of RSI continue to steer our work. Chief among those ideas: sharing reliable information about court ADR among court ADR programs can elevate the quality and effectiveness of court ADR services. We are living out that idea with comprehensive monitoring of foreclosure mediation programs administered by RSI and by our program partners. By collecting reliable and accurate data, RSI is able to provide program evaluation that is improving the quality of foreclosure mediation throughout the state.

Want a way to celebrate? Go to RSI’s Razoo site and make a donation! We plan to be around for a lot of double decades to come, so how about some multiple of $20?

Connecticut Evaluates Mortgage Foreclosure Mediation Program

Shawn Davis, March 9th, 2015

In October 2014, the Connecticut Judicial Branch released an evaluation of its Mortgage Foreclosure Mediation Program. The Connecticut study evaluates six years of foreclosure mediation program data, dating from the program’s inception in 2008. As RSI prepares the first evaluation of Illinois’ six foreclosure mediation incubation programs, the earliest of which began accepting cases in December 2013, it’s interesting to review Connecticut’s data and how the program has evolved over time.

Given Connecticut’s six year history with foreclosure mediation, the report is able to explore how homeowners who participate in the foreclosure mediation program have fared over time. This information is very valuable, since the long term sustainability of mortgage modifications, such as those offered through HAMP, have often been called into question. (more…)

Different Program Models Beginning to Show Different Strengths

Jennifer Shack, August 4th, 2014

The Illinois Attorney General’s grant for foreclosure mediation has so far resulted in five programs with five different service delivery models. This has had me, as evaluator of the programs, anxious to find out how the differences will affect program outcomes. Having just completed the first statistical report for the foreclosure mediation programs, my initial impression is that program model really does matter when it comes to many performance measures. (more…)

Maryland and Illinois: A Tale of Two States

Jennifer Shack, May 15th, 2014

As someone working to develop and improve court ADR in Illinois, I have long been envious of the comparatively vast resources available to do this in Maryland. And I’ve also been very interested in what Maryland’s multi-year statewide evaluation of ADR will find.  Recently, the research team involved in the evaluation published its report on Maryland’s ADR landscape. To some extent, the report was eye opening. Despite a Supreme Court that is highly supportive and a statewide organization with ample funding, in some ways the landscape looks very much like Illinois’, where the Supreme Court has not taken a leadership role and funding has been limited and unreliable.  (more…)

What Works in Foreclosure Dispute Resolution?

Jennifer Shack, November 13th, 2013

With foreclosure dispute resolution programs proliferating around the country, the natural question to ask is, “Do they work?” That’s what former RSI staff member Heather Scheiwe Kulp and I set out to determine. The answer, as discussed in our article, “Foreclosure Dispute Resolution Programs: Do They Work?” (Probate and Property, November/December 2013), is that some do and some don’t. Some are achieving what they set out to achieve, at least to some extent. Others aren’t.  What the programs want to achieve varies, though with much overlap. Goals include keeping homeowners in their homes, helping homeowners and lenders come to mutually agreeable resolution, improving judicial efficiency, and so on. (more…)